Milan, Italy – Assocomaplast, the Italian trade association for plastic and rubber processing equipment makers, has said the 2015 full-year forecast is optimistic, with exports for the first three quarters of 2015 nearly equalling exports for the whole of 2014.
Assocomaplast’s research office, analysing Italian Central Institute of Statistics foreign trade data, says that 2015 may even break the 2007 export record of €2.8bn (£2.05bn), and that this trend could push Italian production beyond the threshold of €4.1 billion.
Alessandro Grassi, president of Assocomaplast said: "The factor bringing most satisfaction to Italian businesses in this sector is the consolidation in exports: in the first nine months of this year they have nearly reached the same level as the full year 2014."
The Italian association highlights that the trend in exports to Europe is also positive, remaining its primary market, but that there is a difference between EU countries, where sales have risen by 13%, and non-EU countries, where they have fallen by 4% overall.
Exports to Germany have recovered compared to previous quarters, states the association, and is the largest destination market for Italian exports in the sector.
A drop in sales to Russia has had the most impact on export figures to non-EU countries from Italy, says Assocomaplast. “This is an important market, to which Italian manufacturers continue to look with great interest and the hope that the values witnessed prior to the imposition of sanctions and the collapse of the rouble will soon be back on the books," said Grassi.
Looking at the rest of the world, Assocomaplast says that sale figures closed positively in the Far East for the first three quarters of 2015 compared to the same time period in 2014. Meanwhile the Middle East has seen a drop of 16% and Africa remains a stagnant export market.