Agribusiness, Fashion and Pharma are the driving sectors of Italian exports

Widespread cases of excellence in the period 2018-2019

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In 2019 foreign trade continued to be a driving force for the Italian economy; despite a partial slowdown - mainly due to less favourable conditions in the international context - Italian exports remained positive: the cumulative growth for the period January-September 2019 over the corresponding period of the previous year stands close to 3% in euro.

As documented in the Exportpedia section - which contains the detail of Italian territorial exports by sector and destination market - the Agribusiness sector (with a cumulative growth of +8.1%), the Fashion industry (with a cumulative growth of +6.3%) and Chemical-Pharmaceutical (with a cumulative growth +6.2%) showed the most favourable performances; the best export growth results are reported to the Swiss (+17.2%), Japanese (+20.2%) and US (+9.4%) markets.

Italian Exports: % y/y changes in euro
January-September 2019

Italian Exports: % y/y changes in euro January-September 2019
The size of the rectangles is proportional to the value of the exports
Source: ExportPlanning - Exportpedia

At a territorial level, there are numerous cases of excellence in Italy's 2019 exports, which confirm (and, in some cases, strengthen) the growth recorded in 2018.

Agribusiness: Best Italian Territories for Export Growths in 2018-2019

For the Agribusiness sector there are numerous cases of excellence, among which stand out:

  • sales from the province of Cuneo of wine and other beverages to the United States (+26.1 million euros in the first nine months of 2019, after an increase of 48.5 million euros in 2018), fruit and spices to Germany (+70.2 million euro in the last seven quarters) and pasta, biscuits and other baked goods to France (+40.6 million euros);
  • exports from the province of Verona to the German market of cheese and other dairy products (+17.2 million euros in the first nine months of 2019, after an increase of 46.2 million in 2018), wine and other beverages (+27.4 million euros in 2019, strengthening the growth recorded in 2018) and condiments and ready meals (+28 million euros in 2019 alone);
  • export performances of the provinces of Foggia (preserves and juices to the UK), Avellino (pasta, biscuits and other bakery products to the US market) and Salerno (desserts, condiments and ready meals to the USA).
Agribusiness: Best Italian Territories for Export Growths in 2018-2019
Delta (Millions euro)
Province Sector Market Year 2018 Jan-Sep 2019 Q1-2018 - Q3-19
Cuneo Wine and other beverages USA +48.5 +26.1 +74.7
Cuneo Fruit and spices Germany +51.6 +18.7 +70.2
Verona Cheese and other dairy products Germany +46.2 +17.2 +63.4
Verona Wine and other beverages Germany +27.4 +17.2 +43.6
Foggia Preserves and juices UK +35.0 +7.2 +42.2
Cuneo Pasta, biscuits and other bakery products France +19.3 +21.3 +40.6
Roma Beverage Bulgaria +18.6 +15.6 +34.2
Parma Cheese and other dairy products USA +4.9 +27.5 +32.4
Verona Seasonings and ready meals Germany +28.0 +4.1 +32.1
Avellino Pasta, biscuits and other bakery products USA +6.2 +21.7 +27.9
Salerno Sweets, condiments, ready meals USA +7.4 +19.7 +27.1
StudiaBo's processing on ISTAT data. For further information, see Exportpedia.

The positive performance of exports of beverages from the province of Rome (particularly to Bulgaria: +18.6 million euros in 2019, after +15.6 million euros in 2018) and of cheese and other dairy products from the province of Parma (especially to the French market) are also worthy of note.

Fashion industry: Best Italian Territories for Export Growths in 2018-2019

The Fashion industry highlights, among the cases of excellence of Italian exports, the following:

  • exports from the province of Florence of leather goods to Switzerland (+293.7 million euros in the first 9 months of 2019, after growth of over 1.1 billion euros in 2018) and France, and - again with reference to Switzerland - of clothing (+684.8 million euros in the last 7 quarters) and footwear (+432 million euros in total);
  • exports from the province of Milan of clothing to Japan (+104 million euros in the last seven quarters) and China (+96 million euros in total), and of footwear to the United States (+60.2 million euros in 2019 alone, reinforcing growth in 2018);
  • exports of clothing from the provinces of Piacenza and Pavia (to China and Austria respectively), of footwear from the province of Venice (with particular reference to France) and of eyewear and other health products from the province of Padua (with particular growth to Switzerland).
Fashion products: Best Italian Territories for Export Growths in 2018-2019
Delta (Millions euro)
Province Sector Market Year 2018 Jan-Sep 2019 Q1-2018 - Q3-19
Firenze Leather goods Switzerland +293.7 +1 126.9 +1 420.6
Firenze Clothing Switzerland +68.6 +616.2 +684.8
Firenze Footwear Switzerland +156.6 +275.3 +431.9
Venezia Footwear France +88.9 +42.7 +131.6
Piacenza Clothing China +102.1 +22.8 +124.9
Milano Clothing China +102.1 +22.8 +124.9
Milano Clothing Japan +41.0 +62.8 +103.8
Milano Footwear USA +60.2 +34.8 +95.0
Pavia Clothing Austria +14.9 +74.1 +89.0
Firenze Leather goods France +30.1 +56.7 +86.8
Padova Eyewear Switzerland +41.5 +28.3 +69.8
StudiaBo's processing on ISTAT data. For further information, see Exportpedia.

Pharmaceuticals: Best Italian Territories for Export Growths in 2018-2019

The Pharmaceutical sector confirmed numerous cases of excellence of Italian Exports at a territorial level; in particular, the following flows for overall increases in the values exported in the two-year period 2018-2019 should be noted:

  • sales from the province of Latina to the United States (with an increase of over +1.5 billion euros in the first 9 months of 2019, reinforcing the positive 2018 result) and to the Netherlands;
  • exports from the province of Milan to Switzerland (+90.8 million euros in the first three quarters of 2019, after +617 million in 2018), China and Germany;
  • the widespread growth in exports from the province of Frosinone (with particular reference to the markets of Germany, France, Sweden, China and Russia).
Pharma: Best Italian Territories for Export Growths in 2018-2019
Delta (Millions euro)
Province Market Year 2018 Jan-Sep 2019 Q1-2018 - Q3-19
Latina USA +225.2 +1 530.3 +1 755.5
Milano Switzerland +616.7 +90.8 +707.4
Frosinone Germany +144.8 +422.3 +567.1
Frosinone France +110.8 +231.4 +342.2
Genova USA +92.2 +147.8 +240.0
Napoli Switzerland +76.6 +122.7 +199.3
Milano China +138.6 +26.5 +165.1
Latina Netherlands +98.9 +64.2 +163.1
Frosinone Sweden +68.2 +68.2 +136.4
Frosinone China +78.8 +48.5 +127.4
Frosinone Russia +14.7 +108.9 +123.7
StudiaBo's processing on ISTAT data. For further information, see Exportpedia.

Last but not least, the positive performance of pharmaceutical exports from the provinces of Genoa to the United States (+€240 million in the last seven quarters), and of Naples to Switzerland (+€199.3 million in cumulative 2018-2019).

Conclusion

Despite the worsening of the international economic situation during 2019, the numerous cases of Italian excellence either at a geographical and sectorial level testify the "resilience" of Italian companies in competing on international markets, both in the more traditional sectors of Made in Italy (Agribusiness and Fashion industry, above all) and in others of more recent specialization- as in the case of Pharmaceuticals.