One of German electronics' most influential players has called on his UK counterparts to back entry into the single European currency.
Dietmar Harting's, owner of the Harting connector group, made the call at the last meeting of UK distributors association Afdec.
His comments carry extra weight as Harting is also president of ZVEI, the German electronics association, and a vice-president of the Confederation of German Industry,
“I believe that the single currency will have a significant impact on the new internal European market, and I hope that you will decide to join the European monetary and economic integration,” he said.
“Just recently we have been discovering the long-lasting impact that the US economy has on Europe, and I believe that a world financial centre like London must be integrated into European development.”
Harting also believes that the introduction of the euro is having a tremendous impact in speeding up moves towards a single European price for components: “Maybe in five years we will be close to harmonisation.”
Harting said that the German electronics sector is still on track for growth of 6 to 7% this year. But he noted that the market is only holding up because customers are sticking to long-term orders placed last year, storing up potential inventory problems.
“2002 will be a very difficult year,” he said.