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Machine tool orders / Decrease in the first quarter of 2019 (-8.5%) (-8.2%) Foreign Orders (-9.8%) Domestic Orders

In the first quarter of 2019, the UCIMU index of machine tool orders showed an 8.5% decrease compared with the same period of the previous year. The absolute value of the index was 127.7 (base 100 in 2015). The overall outcome was due to the reduction registered in the collection of orders, both in the domestic and in the foreign markets.

In particular, foreign orders highlighted an 8.2% drop versus the period January-March 2018. The absolute value of the index stood at 124.3.

Even on the domestic front, the Italian machine tool manufacturers registered a downturn in the order collection, down by 9.8%,
compared with the first quarter of 2018. The absolute value of the index was 129.1.

Massimo Carboniero, President of UCIMU-SISTEMI PER PRODURRE, stated: “The outcome of the first quarter leads to a careful consideration, because now, in addition to the evident, reduced order collection in the domestic market, started in the first quarter of 2018, there is also a decrease in the orders collected abroad”.

“With reference to the domestic market, the order downturn is not surprising after the exploit in 2017. We expected such reduction and, by observing the results of 2018 and of this first part of 2019, we can affirm that the values are back to the typical levels of the Italian market”.

“This said, however we should consider that the manufacturing industry in our country still needs to invest in new production machinery and technologies. Therefore, it is necessary that the Government authorities confirm the technicalities concerning the reinstatement of Super-Depreciation, as presented in the Growth Decree”.

“Actually, for the SMEs, Super-Depreciation represents the simplest instrument to foster the replacement and upgrade of industrial machinery. For this reason, it matches well with Hyper-Depreciation, which, on the other hand, supports and encourages the spread of innovation with regard to the digital aspect”.

“Some years ago, the Italian manufacturing industry, as well as the whole country, started a progressive process of renewal and transformation, aimed at improving the competitiveness of Made in Italy product offering. It would be risky to interrupt this path halfway, also and mostly considering the employment situation”.

“Italy needs to strengthen and increase the value of its manufacturing production, safeguarding its enterprises, its know-how and employment. To do this, we need tools that may incentivise investments in technology. Only in this way, by adding innovation to innovation, we will strengthen our leadership in those fields that are often “niche sectors”, where our product offering is significantly preferred to that of our competitors”.

“Abroad, the data collection regarding our index – added the president of UCIMU-SISTEMI PER PRODURRE – shows a slowdown. The atmosphere of political instability, the concurrence with the European Elections, the stagnation of some markets, such as Germany, and of some sectors of destination that are particularly relevant for Italian machine tools, such as the automotive, as well as the protectionist closure of some important markets, make the activity of Italian manufacturers abroad certainly less easy”.

“For this reason, we ask the Government authorities to consider an increase in tax incentives for the Italian enterprises that take part in leading sector exhibitions held in non-EU countries. Actually, the participation in trade shows, especially in far-way countries, represents the best marketing tool for a SME. Indeed, over 50 Italian companies exhibited their technologies at the most important exhibition organised in China that took place in the middle of April. Their goal was to take advantage of the demand of local users and of neighbouring countries, which is certainly among the most dynamic ones in the international scenario”.

“But all this is not enough – concluded President Carboniero –. Therefore, within the internationalisation activity of 2019, UCIMU, together with the Ministry of Economic Development, Embassies, ICE-Italian Trade Agency and the national sector associations, organised a series of bilateral forums in Russia, India and China, conceived to encourage the dialogue between the countries involved in each forum and concerning their respective economic-political-institutional country system and their industrial systems”.