Italian Woodworking Machinery State of the Industry Report 2011: Stats Show Sharp Rise in Exports

For the italian woodworking machinery manufacturers, 2011 was characterized as reflecting a significant recovery. According to the preliminary figures processed by the Italian woodworking machinery manufacturers' association, ACIMALL, production amounted to 1,699 million euros - a stark increase of 10.2 % compared to the previous year. Italian exports in 2011 amounted to 1,278 million euros, i.e. 75 percent of the sector's total production. ACIMALL's analysts estimate that, in 2011, Italian machinery export accounted for 18 percent of the total global offer, confirming the international leadership of "Made in Italy" machinery in this industry.

According to preliminary data – and the association's daily contacts with member companies – the year 2012 seems to bring a trend of substantial stability compared to 2011. The solidity of the production level will be possible thanks to purchases from some important foreign markets, such as Russia, Brazil and China. On the domestic side, the situation seems much more uncertain, with the handicraft industry in strong suffering and, therefore, not prone to technology renovation of their machine fleet.

From January to December 2011, export to Latin America increased by 30 percent. Such growth, definitely high, was determined by Brazil, the largest market in this region (50.6 million euros, up by 43.2 percent) and by Argentina and Chile, respectively purchasing Italian machinery for 17 and 14 million euros.

Countries in the Far East purchased 7 percent more from Italy than in the same period of 2010, absorbing 16 percent of Italian export for a total value of 199 million euros. Within this situation, increasing export figures were recorded to the China (49 million euros, up by 22 percent), Taiwan and Saudi Arabia (10 million euros, up by 18.6 percent). Among Bric countries, recovery of Russian market was finally consolidated, with over 60 million euros, increased by 27.5 percent compared to 2010.

The figures for January-December 2009 clearly show that the European Union is still the main destination of Italian woodworking technology, absorbing as much as 47 percent of export. France is still the most attractive market, with a 12 percent increase compared to 2010. Among the other markets, a major destination was Germany with a value of 95 million euros.

Among mature markets, North America suffered from severe shrinkage, accounting for 7 percent of Italian export. Italian export to the three Nafta countries in 2011 amounted to 80 million euros.