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德国是怎样成为欧洲之中国的

时间:2011-03-02 17:14:52  来源:  作者:

By Michael Schuman / Stuttgart

There is no particularly special technology needed to make a chainsaw. It's really just plastic and metal parts screwed together with old-fashioned nuts and bolts. The Chinese already make chainsaws. But that hasn't stopped German power-tool manufacturer Stihl from selling its made-in-Germany chainsaws around the world, even though its top-end models are among the priciest on the market. In fact, 86% of the products Stihl makes in its high-cost German factories are exported. How Stihl manages that says a lot about the impact a revived German economy is having on Europe and the world — both good and bad.

制作链锯确实无需高深科技,只是用传统的螺丝螺母将塑料手柄和金属链条加以组合。中国人在大量地制造链锯,这并不妨碍德国工具制造商斯迪希(Stihl)公司在世界范围内畅销他们的“德国制造”链锯,虽然其均有不菲价格。实际上,在斯迪希公司这些以高成本著称的德国工厂里,86%的产品用于出口。管窥一斑,斯迪希的成功之处恰是一个德国经济复苏的缩影,并为欧洲和世界带来某种冲击--这种冲击褒贬不一而足。
The family-owned firm, based near Stuttgart in Germany's south, could shift more production to its lower-wage factories in China and Brazil, but management is committed to manufacturing many of its most advanced products at home. In contrast to the American habit of outsourcing as much as possible, about half the parts in a German-made chainsaw — from the chain to the crankshaft — are produced in Stihl factories, and many of them are made in Germany. And instead of laying off staff during the Great Recession, as so many U.S. firms did, Stihl locked in highly trained talent by offering full-time workers an employment guarantee until 2015. Stihl even added specialists to its product-development team during the downturn. The result is high-quality products that command price tags big enough — professional Stihl chainsaws cost as much as $2,300 in Germany — to make manufacturing profitable even with the nation's high wages. U.S. companies "don't try hard enough to keep production inside the country," says Stihl chairman Bertram Kandziora.

斯迪希公司位于斯图加特,是一个家族企业,它本来可以将产品转移到中国的低薪工厂去做,但是管理层仍然信守先进工艺德国制造的承诺。“德国制造”链锯的配件--从锯条到手柄--大约有一半在斯迪希的工厂完成,绝大部分在德国本土,这与美国人的尽可能外包生产形成鲜明对比。在大衰退期间,斯迪希公司非但没有像美国企业那样解雇工人,相反,他们与高素质员工续签了直到2015年的长期劳动合同,甚至在经济低迷期,也没有忘了给产品开发团队增加人手。这样的结果就是,精良品质,昂贵价格--一把专业斯迪希链锯在德国售2300美金之多--以及高工资基础上的丰厚利润。斯迪希总裁Bertram Kandziora认为:“美国公司在本土生产方面略逊一筹。”

Stihl defines how Germany resurrected its economy — and how the U.S. might too. The small, often family-owned enterprises that make up the backbone of German manufacturing have historically specialized in the unsexy side of the industrial spectrum: not smart phones or iPads but machinery and other heavy equipment, metal bashing infused with sound technology and disciplined engineering. But in recent years, German firms, aided by farsighted government reforms, have turned that into an art form, forging the most competitive industrial sector of any advanced economy. The proof is a boom in exports, which jumped 18.5% in 2010, that is the envy of the developed world.

斯迪希的成功正是德国经济复苏的例证,美国可引以为鉴。这些小企业,家族企业,恰恰构成德国工业的中坚力量,他们生产领域均有古板简约的传统:这里没有智能手机和ipad,有的是重型装备和金属器材,辅之以尖端科技和严谨设计。但是近年来,在政府的锐意引导之下,德国企业在这方面有所改观,产品在设计的艺术性方面风生水起,活色生香。随之而来的是出口繁荣,据统计德国在2010年出口跳跃式增长18.5%,令其他发达国家刮目相看。
That surge has carried Germany out of the Great Recession more quickly than most major industrialized countries. GDP rose 3.6% in 2010, compared with 2.9% in the U.S. While joblessness in the U.S. and much of Europe has spiked to levels not seen in decades, unemployment in Germany has declined during the crisis, to an estimated 6.9% in 2010 from 8.6% in 2007, according to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). "Germany is in a very competitive position today, more than ever," proclaims Stéphane Garelli, director of the World Competitiveness Center at the Swiss business school IMD.

出口的异军突起使德国比其他工业化国家更迅速地摆脱了大衰退的困扰。2010年GDP增长了3.6%,而美国只有2.9%。据经合组织统计,在衰退时期,美国和大部分欧洲国家失业率都保持在10年来的高点,而德国风景这边独好,失业率自2007年的8.6%下降至2010年的6.9%。瑞士IMD商学院世界竞争力中心的负责人,斯蒂芬妮.贾乐里认为:“德国比过去任何时候都具有竞争力。”
Germany's revival has reversed its role in Europe. Less than a decade ago, Germany was a bumbling behemoth beset by chronic unemployment and pathetic growth. As its more aggressive neighbors such as Spain, Britain and Ireland rode the craze in global finance to stellar performances, they looked at Germany as their stodgy old uncle, unable to change outdated, socialist habits and adapt to a new world. But the financial crisis proved just the opposite. While Spain, Ireland and other former euro-zone highflyers tumble into debt crises, victims of excessive exuberance and risky policies, a steady but reformed Germany has emerged as Europe's dominant economic power. According to the OECD, Germany accounted for 60% of the GDP growth of the euro zone in 2010, up from only 10% in the early 2000s. "We changed from the sick man of Europe to the engine," says Steffen Kampeter, parliamentary state secretary at Germany's Ministry of Finance in Berlin.

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