Distinguished guests at the 62nd BetonTage,

The present program for the 62nd BetonTage impressively shows that the application possibilities for concrete as a construction material are virtually unlimited, especially in industrial prefabrication. This literally boundless diversity applies not only to applications, but also in terms of geography – as Australia, our partner country this year, which I would like to take this opportunity to warmly welcome, well illustrates. The possibilities of the construction material concrete are continuously extended the world over, its limits continually moved outward, and concrete innovations intensively discussed in our community. In this context, our BetonTage, as the largest gathering of the concrete industry in Europe, is eminently suited. Here, trends are set, new stimulus provided, and solutions discussed – to meet the global challenges placed on our construction material concrete. The technologies applied here for efficient, cost-effective, and high-quality industrial prefabrication can likewise be discussed with our system partners, as well as possible applications with engineers and architects as our potential customers. The fact that our concept strikes significant chords across international borders is attested to not only by the international origins of our guests, but also by our offshoot events spawned by BetonTage: for example, BetonTage Asia, which, in 2018 will take place already for the fifth time in Shanghai. Quite new is also the Innovation in Precast Summit, held for the first time in 2017 and once again to take place in November of 2018.
Another topic concerning us for some time is recruitment of the upcoming generation of technically qualified junior staff. This topic includes the discussion of training and further education, which plays a key role at the BetonTage, as does the communication of the attractiveness of our workplaces. Here, our locations, which are not necessarily in inner cities, play a role just as important as career prospects in our industry – which is primarily characterized by mid-sized companies. Here it is important to communicate and emphasize the advantages of our situation. This, too, will be a focal point of the BetonTage this year. I wish all of us great inspiration in our various thematic fields that we can take home with us this year from the best platform of our industry: our BetonTage.