Montag, 11.05.2020, 09:28 Uhr
Presents the balance sheet for the year 2019
The statistics office of the Italian association Acimall presents the balance of the country's woodworking machinery manufacturers. "Never before has it been so important to understand the economic situation of the industry we represent," says Dario Corbetta, head of Acimall, the industry's employers' umbrella organization. "A season awaits us in which strong nerves and a central economic policy are needed, a policy that is stronger and offers good approaches than ever before, because without it, the price the woodworking machinery industry has to pay would probably be immense. Unfortunately, as our statistics office has pointed out, in addition to the effects of Covid-19, we have to add up a 2019 financial year in which the sector suffered a significant decline, so we are now even more challenged to return to the level of 2016-2018".
The Italian woodworking machinery and tooling sector generated a turnover of 2,266 million euros in 2019, a decrease of 9.9% compared to 2018. After an initial "acceptable" course, there were more significant slumps that affected all the major international players, with Germany leading the way.
In 2019, exports shrank by eight percentage points, with the core markets essentially holding their own. Fortunately, Italy enjoys a good export network, although significant problems were felt in some markets. The decline in the domestic market was 13.5 percent, a reversal of the trend that has always been positive over the past five years, not least thanks to the tax incentives that enabled many Italian companies to renew their machinery in 2016-2018, but inevitably led to declining purchases in subsequent years.
Imports were hit even harder, with a minus of 17 percent, while the trade balance amounted to an impressive 1.4 billion euros. Once again, the Italian woodworking technology sector confirms its strong orientation towards exports and thus contributes significantly to Italy's active trade balance.
Contrary to the trend, the target market France increased by five percentage points and thus accounted for a turnover of 110 million euros. Exports to Germany soared by 9.3 percent to a volume of 102 million euros and sales to Poland slumped by 20 percent. Exports to Spain fell by 8.9 percent and to the United Kingdom by 13 percent. Russia and Turkey deserve special mention: Russia, which has been limping for years due to currency tensions and credit difficulties, fell by a further 9 per cent to 38 million euros, while exports to Turkey even fell by 50 per cent to a volume of 100 million euros in 2019. The USA remains the most important sales market with sales of 200 million euros, but also fell by five percent. In South America, the negative trend in Argentina continued and fell by 50 percent to six million euros. Brazil, on the other hand, invested 30 percent more last year, achieving a sales volume of 20 million euros.
The total Middle East market achieved a sales volume of 33 million euros, 14 percent less than in 2018. The Far East is dominated by China. Italian manufacturers were able to generate sales of 63 million euros here. This decline deserves special attention, as Italian companies are showing increasing difficulties with internationalization. The ever-increasing competence of local machine manufacturers is also leading to a reduction in the number of market niches from which foreign producers can benefit. Added to this are the customs duties that weigh heavily on the Asian furniture industry and thus have a negative impact on demand for woodworking machinery.
In Australia, purchases of Italian woodworking machinery in 2019 have shrunk by 38 percent to 20 million euros. However, as in Poland and other countries, extremely strong figures from 2018 apply here, which subsequently led to a simple normalisation of the market.