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PSI opening: Shaping the future, mastering challenges

Dominique Schroller

Published on 09.01.2024

On the first day of the trade fair, the trade fair and industry demonstrated their solidarity. However, the focus was also on reducing bureaucracy, personnel and energy costs as well as demands on politicians. 

Shaping the future together, addressing challenges and finding solutions – this goal was at the centre of the PSI opening. “It is important to me that we use this event to promote dialogue and plan the future together,” emphasised Michael Köhler, Managing Director of RX Germany, at the opening. Expectations are high, with 567 exhibitors from 29 nations and visitors from up to 80 countries, the event emphasises its market relevance. “It’s increasingly about quality, diversity, innovation and sustainability,” emphasised Michael Köhler. “As PSI, we also fulfil an educational mission, which we want to live up to as a trade show and network all year round,” added PSI Director Petra Lassahn. Among other things, this is visible through the numerous international speakers and experts during the trade show, sold-out special areas such as the Textile Village or the MoPA exhibition, which is a monument to promotional products.

Improving the framework conditions

Marcus Sperber also emphasised the solidarity between the trade fair and the industry. “I myself have been attending PSI since 1991 and this year my 18-year-old son is also here for the first time. Many friendships have developed during this time. We work together and I really appreciate that,” emphasised the Managing Director of elasto. However, he also addressed the challenges facing the industry and called for an improvement in the framework conditions. These included, above all, easing the administrative burden, personnel and energy costs as well as supply chains and storage. “We are a bureaucracy monster in Germany,” emphasised Steven Baumgaertner, CEO of Cyber-wear. He expressly called for fewer regulations and more entrepreneurial spirit from politicians.

Initiative for more growth

Markus Herbrand, financial policy spokesman for the FDP parliamentary group, sympathised with the displeasure, but also pointed to the first steps in the right direction. “Something has definitely happened since last year. For example, we have launched the Bureaucracy Relief Act, taken measures in tax legislation and provided relief of around 6 billion euros in the Growth Opportunities Act.” He conceded that more could be done, but also asked for understanding for the fact that problems that have not all arisen in the past two years cannot be solved in a short space of time. “But I share the view that we need more growth and need to do our homework when it comes to energy, labour and reducing bureaucracy,” said Markus Herbrand.

Finding solutions together

Stehen Baumgaertner is also hoping that the coming days of the trade fair will provide impetus. “I’m looking forward to us all coming together here, exchanging ideas, discussing problems and finding solutions. There is great solidarity in the industry – even internationally.” This spirit of partnership gives him confidence, especially with a view to the future.