Partners to the “Industrial Master Plan” have added Industry 4.0 and 3D printing to create ideal framework conditions for companies in Hamburg and their employees, a press release said in December. The inclusion will also secure industrial competitiveness in Hamburg. Launched in 2007, the Industrial Master Plan originally included seven fields of activity and strategies.
Need to expand 3D printing
Industry 4.0 refers to widespread digitalisation, which holds many challenges for SMEs in particular. Knowledge-intense industries, interconnected services, good qualification levels in Hamburg form the basis for meeting these challenges. Opportunities offered by 3D printing are being seized at ZAL and Airbus in particular. While 3D metal printing is already well underway, progress has yet to be made in 3D printing other materials e.g. plastic.
Commenting on the addition Frank Horch, Senator for Economics, Transport and Innovation, said: “The way is being paved for the global, industrial future. We must put our location at the head of this movement, if we wish to play a significant role among the concerted, industrial nations. And that does not mean switching from analogous to digital processes. We must think more fundamentally. Industry and the mid-sized sector will have to change their business models, their understanding of technology, work processes, development procedures and value chains drastically.“
Michael Westhagemann, CEO of Hamburg’s Industrial Association, said: “From a contemporary perspective, the ‘Industrial Master Plan’ has stood the test with major fields of activity and especially in terms of innovation. However, we wish to focus more on Industry 4.0 and 3D printing. These digital fields of activity are of special importance to Hamburg as an industrial location!”
Industrial employees fundamental to prosperity
Uwe Polkaehn, CEO of the North German Trade Union Confederation (DGB Nord) noted: “Hamburg can thank a large part of the present prosperity to industrial employees. The master plan secures a long-term industrial policy to strengthen industrial competitiveness, innovation and employment.“ DGB Nord became a partner to the plan in 2014.
Tobias Bergmann, President of the Hamburg Chamber of Commerce, said: “Digitalisation offers great opportunities and poses huge challenges for the industrial mid-sized sector in particular. Since late last year, a consortium led by our IHK has been supporting companies en route to the digital future with the “Mittelstand 4.0 Kompetenzzentrum Hamburg”. I am delighted to anchor new fields of activity in the Industrial Master Plan with our partners.“
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