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Italian export, clear signs of recovery in 2010
After 2009, which could be described as an "annus horribilis", Italian export is breathing a distinct air of recovery in the first quarter of 2010, shown by a significant 8.8% increase.
These are the findings of the 2009-2010 report by the Italian Institute for Foreign Trade (ICE) on "Italy in the International Economy", produced together with the Italian Institute of Statistics (ISTAT).
The trend for the start of 2010 is positive and, according to analysts from the Institute for Foreign Trade, should be confirmed on an annual basis, with increasing focus on emerging countries, which remain the "engine" for world growth.
This is the formula for overcoming the recession, which was particularly felt in 2009, especially by those working in Europe, where, according to the data, if there has been any growth at all, it has been limited.
Italy seems "to have latched onto recovery" in 2010, as the ISTAT president, Enrico Giovannini, explained during his presentation of the report, and the numbers speak for themselves. Exports from January to April are up by 8.8%, exports outside of the EU for the same period have increased by 10.4% and imports from January to April have risen by 12,5%. The balance of trade for the same period shows a deficit of 9.2 billion Euros, a negative result that is considered normal, however, for a phase of recovery.
Some of the most important measures implemented by the Italian Institute for Foreign Trade this year have, without doubt, been the efforts to ensure that the potential of Italian companies is present and recognised in as many countries as possible throughout the world. The President, Umberto Vattani, explained this well and the figures seem to fully confirm his statement. 189,812 businesses made sales to other countries during 2009. Over 116 thousand of these were micro-exporters, accounting for less than 1% of exports; slightly fewer than 3 thousand operators, however, account for 65% of national exports.
An important new aspect has been introduced in the 2009-2010 edition of the Italian Trade Commission report: that of Italian-controlled companies based abroad. This factor has been recognised for the first time and appears fundamentally important for providing a complete picture of the performance of Italian foreign trade. There were 20,050 of these companies in 2007, employing a workforce of over 1.4 million and creating a turnover of around 389 billion Euros.
After outlining the situation of companies and turnover, the ICE-ISTAT report provides a complete overview of those countries to which Italian export has been directed over the last year, and then focuses in particular on those countries towards which it is worth turning for investment. The main destination countries for Italian products include Germany, France, the United States, Spain and the United Kingdom, with China occupying only the eleventh place. Then come Russia, Greece and Turkey.
The report on Italy in the international economy emphasises the fact that Central Asia, and China in particular, represent the engine for global recovery, and Italian exports still count for relatively little in these markets. Precisely because they are so important for the world economy, however, now is the right time and occasion to make them more prominent.