Assocomaplast Announces All-Time Record Exports
Assocomaplast (the Italian trade association belonging to Confindustria, which groups together over 160 makers of machinery, molds and equipment for plastics and rubber) has published its 2015 balance sheet for the sector, also according to ISTAT foreign trade data. "The most heartening item for Italian companies," underscored Assocomaplast president Alessandro Grassi, "is exports, which once again have proven to be the driving force for the sector. Indeed, a significant upsurge in the final months of the year took exports past the threshold of 2.9 billion euros, setting an all-time record, going well beyond the 2.75 billion in 2007."
An initial analysis of the macro-regions for sales abroad of Italian machinery highlights expansion in NAFTA, led by increased sales to US converters in 2015: +50% in value over 2014, exceeding EUR 260 million. And growth on the order of 20 percentage points was also recorded in Mexico and Canada. Accompanying that excellent performance, a positive trend (+11%) is also observed in sales to markets within the European Union – further extending gains made in recent years. However, this contrasts with an overall downturn in sales to Old-World countries outside of the EU, dragged down by persistent contraction in the Russian market, still reeling from the well known economic and political turmoil. Germany has stayed true to form as Italy's main trading partner, increasing its imports of Italian machinery by +14%.
Surveys also showed that increases in earnings in 2015 for Assocomaplast members were above average for the sector. An 18% increase in imports supports the sensation of recovery in the domestic market expressed by members on a number of occasions last year. In parallel, the survey conducted in early March among a significant sample of Italian converters highlights improvement over February of last year and the 3-4-month forecasts also show a strong upward trend in orders and production.
The Association has thus amended upwards last December's full-year forecast, estimating national production on the order of EUR 4.15 billion, continuing the growth trend that began in 2010 after the significant downturn during the latest global recession.
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