The shortage of skilled workers is exacerbated: Missing lessons has enormous long-term consequences

The shortage of skilled workers is exacerbated
Missing lessons has enormous long-term consequences

The school closings in the pandemic have been massively criticized, especially because many parents have to master a dual role and cannot quite get to work themselves. The “economy” Veronika Grimm worries above all about the massive educational losses of the children. Which, she fears, will cost trillions of euros.

The “economy” Veronika Grimm fears significant long-term economic consequences due to the increasing number of infections and a renewed threat of loss of lessons at schools from autumn onwards. According to calculations, the loss of economic output due to a loss of education could run into the trillions by the end of the century, said Grimm. Persistent loss of education is the greatest risk of a fourth corona wave in Germany. “The problem is that you again have no strategy to get in front of the wave by testing,” said Grimm.

Politically, it is probably not an option to keep schools open without restrictions in the event of a sharp increase in the number of infections – especially since a large number of students are not vaccinated against Covid-19. “That can have significant economic effects in the long run,” said Grimm. The danger is that those affected will not be successful on the labor market and that the already blatant shortage of skilled workers will once again increase significantly. There is also the risk that Germany will fall behind compared to other countries in which such restrictions are not necessary or do not take place.

Service sector supports the economy

The economy is currently doing well, however, said the economy, which has a chair for economics at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg. In the vehicle industry and construction in particular, economic activity continues to be held back by delivery bottlenecks. The service sector, however, has picked up new momentum. “At the moment you can see that the demand is picking up,” says Grimm. The chemical industry even recorded an increase of five percent in emissions compared to April 2021.

Marc Schattenberg, an economist at Deutsche Bank, also sees the economy currently on the right track. The growth losses of the first quarter may have been compensated for in the second quarter. On an annual basis, German economic output is likely to grow by four percent, he said. After industry had been the driving force behind the economy for a long time, it is now suffering from delivery problems. “The services have taken over the baton,” said Schattenberg. A positive global environment with stable demand for German exports, especially from China and the USA, is also stabilizing the situation.