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Focus on AI and energy transition

According to the organizers, it is the world's most important industrial trade fair: The Hannover Messe is showing innovations from the energy industry and mechanical engineering until Friday. The Chancellor hopes that the exhibition will provide new impetus.

Hanover is the meeting place for the industry for a week. In the evening, Chancellor Olaf Scholz, EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and the Prime Minister of this year's partner country Norway, Jonas Gahr Støre, opened the exhibition – together with numerous representatives from business and politics.

Around 4,000 exhibitors from 60 countries will be showing innovations from mechanical and plant engineering, electrical engineering and climate protection technologies until Friday.

Affordable energy and more innovations

Chancellor Scholz hopes that the Hannover Messe will provide new impetus for the energy transition and for strengthening the competitiveness of German industry. “What our country will live on in the future is what can be seen at this trade fair: that we develop new things, that we continually improve products, that we research and apply future-oriented technologies,” said Scholz at the opening of what the organizers say is the most important event in the world Industrial trade fair.

With a focus on artificial intelligence (AI) and solutions for the energy transition, the industrial show sets important priorities, said the SPD politician. Affordable energy and more innovations are the central prerequisites for strengthening productivity and growth. This requires intelligent AI solutions like those on display at the trade fair: “Machines that take simple tasks off our hands so that employees can switch to more highly qualified jobs.”

Trade fair boss Jochen Köckler also emphasized loudly NDR: AI plays a crucial role in making the industry competitive in the future. “AI is the key to a competitive and sustainable industry.” Despite the labor shortage, it offers the industry an opportunity for growth, said Köckler. An AI assistant that allows industrial robots to be controlled by voice will be presented at the trade fair. You can also see machines that automatically detect errors or systems that independently set appointments for their own maintenance.

More than 500 exhibitors on hydrogen

Numerous technology companies are also represented at the trade fair, including Microsoft, Google, Amazon Web Services, Dell, SAP, Siemens and Bosch. There are also a number of medium-sized companies and more than 300 start-ups. More than 500 exhibitors belong to the hydrogen sector alone. “This means that the Hannover Messe is also a world leader in this topic,” said trade fair boss Köckler.

This year's partner country Norway was also deliberately chosen with this focus in mind. Thanks to its abundant hydropower, the country is able to supply large quantities of green, i.e. climate-friendly, hydrogen.

Too much bureaucracy

There has recently been criticism in the economy of too much bureaucracy and high energy prices. From the industry's perspective, this endangers the attractiveness of the location, especially in comparison to other regions such as the USA. “A modern supply policy naturally also means that we are becoming faster and simpler,” emphasized Scholz. “Reducing bureaucracy costs nothing and brings a lot.”

The EU Commission is also working on dismantling regulations with the support of the federal government. “That's also true, because most of the bureaucratic rules come from Brussels.” The aim is to reduce the number of reports that companies have to submit according to EU regulations by at least a quarter.

Energy prices too high

When it comes to energy prices, the federal government is also discussing how relief for energy-intensive companies could be continued. Most recently, the President of the Electrical and Digital Industry Association ZVEI, Gunther Kegel, criticized the fact that energy prices were still too high for energy-intensive companies despite the decline.

EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, who spoke for the first time at the opening of the trade fair, agreed with Scholz. Only if Europe becomes simpler, faster and cheaper can the location survive against increasingly tough global competition. “The central thing is that we relieve the burden on companies and reduce bureaucracy.” The speed of wind energy also needs to be increased.

Helmut Eickhoff, NDR, tagesschau, April 21, 2024 9:58 p.m

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