Covid also sinks the excellence of Piedmont. For the first time the industrial districts in negative

TURIN. The effect Covid interrupts growth that had lasted since 2016 for the 12 industrial districts and 2 technological poles of Piedmont and which, last year, had brought exports to a record figure of 11.4 billion euros. The minus sign overwhelms exports for the first time, the real strength of Piedmontese excellence, which contracted by 22.8% for a total of 1.3 billion. This is what emerges from the Monitor on the first six months of the year prepared by the Studies and Research Department of Banca Intesa Sanpaolo.

The half-year trend was conditioned by a particularly negative second quarter (-35.9%), while in the first three months the decline was more contained (-8.7%). Overall, about 3 percentage points below the national average. Exports fell by 22.2% to mature markets – Europe, USA, Canada, Japan – and by 24.2% to new markets. There was a notable contraction in sales in Switzerland, France, the United States and the United Kingdom. Decreases in exports are also recorded towards China, Hong Kong and Japan.

As usual, a good resilience of agro-food emerges, although there are still sectors that creak, while the most marked difficulties emerge for the Mechanics and Fashion sectors, with exports more than halved compared to the first half of 2019. of Biella and the Goldsmiths of Valenza have accused the slowdown in consumption. The sharp rise in gold prices also had an impact on jewelery, which depressed world demand.

The mechanics sector (taps and valves in Cusio-Valsesia, machine tools and industrial robots in Turin, industrial refrigerators in Casale Monferrato and textile machinery in Biella) was affected by blockages in countries belonging to international value chains and by the uncertainty that affects investment decisions. The Home system, represented in Piedmont by the small Household district of Omegna, suffered a 21.7% drop in exports.

The Piedmont agro-food districts in the first half of 2020 managed to increase exports by 3.3%, with the most marked loss recorded for the wines of the Langhe, Roero and Monferrato (-4.7%).

Exports from the two regional technological hubs had a different trend. Turin’s ICT (communication technologies) hub in the first six months of 2020 saw its exports grow by 2.5% (8 million), thanks to a particularly positive first quarter. For the aerospace hub of Piedmont, exports fell by 23.7% (112 million).

«I notice in companies a greater awareness of the need to adapt choices and projects to the current situation. It would be the right time to make investments in digitization and green conversion », comments Teresio Testa, head of the Piedmont, Valle d’Aosta and Liguria Regional Directorate of Banca Intesa Sanpaolo.

The resilience varies from sector to sector and the scenario remains very uncertain and strongly conditioned by the evolution of the pandemic. «The trends – concludes the economist Romina Galleri – are different between sectors, but all suffer from the effects of this crisis. Also as regards the domestic market, many sales are linked to occasions that have been canceled by the pandemic or, for example for wines, they are directed to channels such as Horeca (hotels, restaurants, catering, ed) closed by lockdowns “.

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