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Italian Ceramic Machinery: 2018 was a Year of Slowdown

The Italian ceramic machinery and equipment industry’s period of expansion has finally come to an end after five consecutive years of growth, a record in the sector’s history.

According to preliminary figures published by the Research Department of ACIMAC (Italian Ceramic Machinery and Equipment Manufacturers’ Association), the industry is expected to close 2018 with a turnover of EUR 2,076 billion. Exports experienced the biggest fall, dropping to EUR 1,493 billion (–9,8 %). “In 2018 we have seen significant falls in production in some of our key outlet markets, and this has had a negative impact on technology investments,” said ACIMAC’s Chairman Paolo Sassi. The Italian market fared better, remaining stable at last year’s levels with EUR 583 million thanks to the final months of the tax incentives provided by the Industry 4.0 plan.

The forecasts for next year are extremely cautious. “The global macroeconomic outlook is essentially contracting so we do not expect to see an increase in turnover in 2019. Our industry is closely linked to the construction sector, which has been one of the most badly hit by the current economic slowdown,” continued P. Sassi. The association’s representatives are also concerned about the economic and social policies adopted by the current Italian government, which pay scant attention to the world of production and risk marginalising Italy on the European stage.

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