Some companies in Hamburg confident despite corona crisis

AGA calls for more uniformity in measures
01 May 2020
Hamburg

A survey of 3,500 members of the AGA business association shows that the recent easing of the lockdown has booted confidence among companies in Hamburg. Conducted on April 21 and 22, 2020 in Hamburg, Bremen, Lower Saxony, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania and Schleswig-Holstein of AGA, 60 per cent ofcompanies said they have been coping with situation for over two months (60 percent). The Corona Emergency aid from the German and states Governments is also reaching companies.

Hope of recovery

7 per cent of interviewees in Hamburg said that they would be able to manage the situation for another four weeks, while 4 per cent they would be able to cope for another six weeks compared to 50 per cent of members, who said in March that they could cope for more than eight weeks or indefinitely. “The economic effects of the lockdown are plunging retailers and service providers into an unprecedented crisis. But the easing measures implemented on Monday has given many entrepreneurs new hope and they and their employees are working even harder to save their businesses,” said AGA President Dr. Hans Fabian Kruse.

Short-time work – key tool

Around 32 per cent of retailers and service providers in Hamburg have already applied for short-time work, while 26 per cent may yet do so and 40 per cent do not intend to do so. The majority of companies applying for short-time work have put up to 60 per cent of their workforce on short-time work, and 10 per cent of companies have put all their empyloyees on short-time. “These figures are incredibly high for our economic levels, which had hardly anything to do with short-time work before corona,” said Volker Tschirch, CEO of AGA. The high volume of actual short-time work is “extraordinary” because the vast majority of the companies surveyed were or are only indirectly affected by the lockdown. 

Successful state aid

The Corona Emergency Aid initiated by the German and state governments is reaching recipients in Hamburg and around one third of the companies surveyed have already received the monies. Employment Agencies have been praised for processing the applications swiftly and for offering reliable advice. Around 56 per cent of interviewees said that collaboration with banks in reference to loans is going “well” or “very well” unlike every fourth respondent, who termed it “bad” or “very bad”. 

Positive feedback 

Respondents also praised the German government’s crisis management and that of Germany’s states. Around 58 per cent of interviewees termed the measures taken “entirely sufficient” or “adequate” while 23 per cent consider them “insufficient” or “inadequate”. Around 61 per cent said they are “satisfied” or “very satisfied” with the relaxation measures.
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