For two years now, the craft sector has been in a state of emergency. After the health crisis, it is now the war in Ukraine that is forcing the sector to rethink. Craftspeople report that, in addition to delivery problems and price increases, the staff shortage must finally be addressed.
Empty shelves in the supermarkets. These were the images that heralded the beginning of the 2020 pandemic and still characterise it today. The situation has been similar since the beginning of the war. However, it is no longer exclusively those products that were pounced on during the pandemic (the Lëtzebuerger Journal reported). Now it is mainly the crafts that must cope with the consequences of the Russian occupation in the neighbouring country.
"Since February 24, the world has been a different place", says Christian Reuter, Deputy Secretary General of Federation of Craftsmen (FDA) at the beginning of the conversation at the FDA headquarters in Kirchberg. With every single question he looks thoughtful. It is this uncertainty that businesses in Luxembourg will have to make do with in the coming months, perhaps years. "To give you an idea: Let's take the construction sector. The prices of materials have skyrocketed incredibly. For stainless steel we're talking about an increase of 30 per cent, for insulation materials from 30 to even 50 per cent and for steel it's a whole 70 per cent." For Reuter, this sometimes raises the following question: "Can I offer the customer these prices?" For him, there is only one answer – a resounding "yes and no".
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