Bad roads, broken bridges and overloaded train routes: More and more companies are complaining about the partially dilapidated infrastructure in Germany.
According to a study published on Tuesday by the employer-related Institute of the German Economy (IW), around 80 percent of companies now feel that their business activities are being impaired by infrastructure deficiencies. That is more than 20 percentage points more than in a similar survey in 2013.
The most frequent complaints are about problems in road traffic - dissatisfaction with the road network is particularly high in North Rhine-Westphalia, Baden-Württemberg and eastern Germany. However, problems with shipping and air traffic have also become more frequent, the institute reports.
The problems are homemade, emphasized the IW. Since 2015, the federal government has made more investment funds available for transport infrastructure. However, these would be eaten up by rising construction costs. Price-adjusted, the investment sum in 2022 is just at the level of 2009. In addition, German planning law is slowing down expansion.
"To get the German infrastructure back on the right track, the federal government must significantly step up its efforts," says IW infrastructure expert Thomas Puls. "Firstly, significantly more money is needed for roads, railways and ports. Secondly, the planning acceleration announced in the coalition agreement must be implemented." Far too often, infrastructure projects got stuck in bureaucratic waters.