The index of orders intake for Italian textile machinery, as compiled by ACIMIT, fell by 47% for the period April-June 2020, compared to the same period in 2019, with orders falling both abroad and in Italy. A 44% decrease in orders was recorded on foreign markets, whereas the domestic market showed a 62% drop compared to the second quarter of the previous year. ACIMIT President Alessandro Zucchi commented, “The lockdown of production units in April heavily influenced the orders intake, and a deep concern remains for the upcoming months.”
“On reopening, our manufacturers worked to process orders collected prior to the lockdown.” ACIMIT notes that the current total extent of assured work amounts to just two and a half months. Zucchi goes on to explain, “Our sector will have to face an equally difficult period. The restart has been slow due to a marked slowdown in apparel consumption in Europe and the United States; a situation that does not lead to new investments from our customers. What’s more, the unknown factor of a possible resurgence of the virus in next Autumn is further curbing the purchase of new machinery.”
President Zucchi added that: “We must take advantage of this moment of forced calm to increase the competitiveness of our businesses.” Focusing on digitalization and internationalization is fundamental for relaunching the sector. “ACIMIT is working hard on both fronts,” states Zucchi, “In partnership with the Politecnico University of Milan, we’ve launched an ambitious project that aims to create a digital label for Italian textile machinery. This will allow our machinery to present itself on global markets with a cutting-edge technological offer. As far as our efforts geared towards internationalization are concerned, the support that the Italian Trade Agency is lending to our sector with remote activities is certainly commendable, in making up for the void created by the cancellation of numerous promotional initiatives that had been planned for 2020. Now it’s up to our manufacturers to take advantage of these new tools.”
ACIMIT represents an industrial sector that comprises roughly 300 manufacturers (employing around 12,000 people), which produce machinery for an overall worth of around 2.2 billion euros, of which 82% are exported. Creativity, sustainable technology, reliability and quality are the hallmarks that have made Italian textile machinery worldwide leaders.