Coronavirus Survey: German-British Chamber of Industry & Commerce 

6 July 2020


The German-British business community is still profoundly affected by the Coronavirus pandemic. Currently, companies continue to reduce costs and/or staffing levels, but the majority can only do this at a pace which is substantially slower than the reduction in activities/turnover experienced. In addition, Brexit is seen as the largest hurdle to overcome the economic effects of the Covid-19 crisis.

However, compared to the Spring Survey the German-British Chamber of Industry & Commerce conducted at the end of March 2020, the German-British business community is slightly less pessimistic about the effects of the Coronavirus pandemic on their businesses. Nevertheless, they expect the recovery to take longer than originally expected and they are even more cautious about a quick overall recovery of the UK economy.

The end of the transition period on 31 December 2020 poses yet another risk for the UK economy. A large majority expects it to have a negative impact of more than 2% on the growth of the UK economy in 2021.

70% (versus 80% in the spring) of the German-British business community expect a decrease of more than 10% in this year’s turnover but now only 15% (versus 30% in the spring) of businesses anticipate a decline of more than 50%.

A decline in demand/cancellation of orders, travel restrictions/cancellation of trade fairs/events and cancelled investments are still having the biggest effect on business.

Even though most companies (55%) in the German-British business community expect to recover by the end of the first half of 2021, more than 70% of them predict that the British economy will need much longer and will only recover towards the end of the second half of 2021 or later.

Dr Ulrich Hoppe, Director General of the German-British Chamber of Industry & Commerce, commented, "The survey results suggest that the German-British business community, despite being slightly less pessimistic about the shorter-term effects of the Coronavirus pandemic, is increasingly worried about the longer term as the expected speed of the recovery is judged to be much slower than anticipated in the spring. Many challenging months lie ahead with Brexit thought to be compounding the Coronavirus effects.”

79 online interviews were conducted with members of the German-British business community with UK operations. The study was part of the World Business Outlook survey of the Association of German Chambers of Industry & Commerce. Fieldwork was conducted between 18 and 26 June 2020. The full results can be found here.


Kindly supplied by the German-British Chamber of Industry & Commerce 


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