Be it in the field of water, solar and wind energy or in relatively new sectors such as e-mobility or “solar cooling” – sustainable energy from renewable sources has been of enormous importance in Austria over the past years, even decades. Austrian companies have built up great know-how in these sectors and are often market leaders in their segment.
The German companies in Romania say their economic situation is good or satisfactory, although most of them see the international circumstances worsening in the coming 12 months, according to a survey conducted in October by the German-Romanian Chamber of Industry and Commerce (AHK Romania).
Would you invest in a business which is not sustainable? The question may at first sight seem absurd – surely in these days all businesses should be sustainable? Surprising as it may seem, the answer is “not necessarily” or at least “not necessarily in all respects”.
We can say, without any hesitation, that the European Union is at the vanguard of the fight against pollution. The efforts to reduce emissions also obviously target the biggest urban polluter – the car. If the year 2035, when we can purchase only electric cars in Europe, is not synonymous with tomorrow, what will happen until that moment?
For almost three years we have been living with our hearts in our mouths and our eyes on horizons that seem increasingly dark. The COVID-19 pandemic has thrown us into a sea of uncertainty and into an economic crisis. But the ongoing war in Ukraine is causing a significant economic disruption globally, fueling the inflation, which remains at very threatening levels. And the fear of war is still here.
Can a business thrive even in years marked by challenges and instability? The answer is yes! VGP, owner, manager and developer of high-quality logistics and semi-industrial real estate, continued its upward trajectory in 2022, year that it ends with a performance beyond expectations. Part of the success can surely be attributed to the fact that VGP is a family business developed on solid principles, with a steady development up to its current footprint – 19 European countries including Romania, which is a key location on the Group’s map.
Most people, let’s face it, don’t really like change. They want to keep doing things how they used to. But apply the right amount of pressure, and they will be forced to try different ways. This is why crises always act as very effective agents of change.
According to the National Bank of Romania, the investments by Austrian companies amount to 10.15 billion €, or 11.2% of all foreign direct investments in Romania. Austrian investors create over 100,000 direct jobs in around 1,500 active companies and are a driving force for economic development and progress in Romania.
The volatility that engulfed the international capital markets at the beginning of the year continued to make its presence felt throughout the first semester, at the end of which most stock indices were in negative territory. The anxiety of international investors was accentuated in February and reached new heights following the outbreak of the armed conflict between Russia and Ukraine. At the end of February, the Romanian capital market went down by 3.61% in the case of BET and BET-TR, an index that also includes dividends. This decline was in line with the evolution of the indices in the developed markets: -3.14% for US’s S&P500 and -3.36% for Europe’s STOXX600 indices. Subsequently, until the end of the first half, the Romanian capital market decoupled from this downward trend. At the end of June, the Romanian capital market returned an increase of 0.8%, through the lens of the BET-TR index, and thus fully recovered the decreases caused by the war in Ukraine. By comparison, the total return variants of the S&P500 or STOXX600 indices decreased by 20%, respectively 14.6% at the end of the first 6 months. The international indices of total return type such as FTSE Emerging Markets or MSCI Frontier Markets - indices in which Romania is also included - were in negative territory with -14.8%, respectively -20.5%.
A few months ago, I took a look at what ”sustainability” means for the BMW Group. Today, the people from Renault Group caught our attention with new business directions hosted under the same umbrella of ”sustainability”.