Italian technology numbers still driven by export



Imaage credit: Acimall Studies

The figures of the first quarter 2018 are clear: It will be a positive year for technologies dedicated to the furniture industry and to wood and wood-based materials.

Such a trend has been confirmed by the quarterly survey done by Acimall, the Confindustria-member industry association. The survey shows a first quarter in line with the results from 2017 and closed with a production value growth of 10.5 per cent as compared to 2016, achieving a historical record of €2.27 billion.

Now, the January-March period has fed optimism, recording 19.2 per cent growth as compared to the first three months of 2017. Export remains the key driver, up by 22.1 per cent from the first quarter of last year, while the domestic market increased by only 3.7 per cent.

However, even as the Italian market continues to fall back into a “pondering” phase after a few months of booming investments supported by the measures and incentives of the Industry 4.0 plan, the solid vocation of Italian companies continues to be to respond to the needs of users all around the world.

The survey by the association also indicates that the orders book has gone down to 3.4 months from 3.6 in the previous quarter) while prices as of January 1st have slightly increased by 0.6 per cent.

According to 65 per cent of the sample, the production trend is positive – stationary according to 29 per cent, decreasing according to six per cent.

Employmentis stable according to 35 per cent of the sample, increasing for 53 per cent, and decreasing for 12 per cent.

Available stocksare also stable according to 65 per cent of the interviewees, decreasing for 29 per cent and increasing for six per cent.

Looking at the short-term outlook, 41 per cent of the interviewees expect an expansion of export orders – while 47 per cent predict a stationary trend, 12 per cent fear a reduction. 23 per cent of the sample is confident about the domestic market; 65 per cent expect stable sales trends within the national borders, while 12 per cent believes they will decrease.