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Italian exports drop in quantity and value
Time:2013-10-11 02:41:26  Source:  Clicks:5442  Tags:stone

In the first nine months of 2009 Italy exported 2.041.000 tons of marble and granite, stone and travertine, including raw materials and finished products, for a value of one billion and thirteen million Euros, thereby recording a -14,5% drop in quantity and a -21,3% drop in value compared to the same period in 2008. These figures are published by the Internazionale Marmi e Macchine Carrara that has processed the Istat statistics, comparing them to its records and drawing up tables for the individual items.

"These are of course incomplete figures as we are still waiting for the end of year figures – commented Giorgio Bianchini, IMM Chairman – and, although they are not very comforting, since the fall in exports in the industry continues, especially on a national level, we are no longer faced with a sharp fall; figures do in fact seem to have settled and even show a slight recovery since the absolute drop in percentage terms is lower than the period from January to June 2009. A situation that seems to have encouraged companies in the industry to take part in the next CarraraMarmotec to be held from 19 to 22 May for which we are registering a large number of participants who are all expecting to see a reverse trend on the international markets".

The uncertain prospects and the general drop in orders adversely affect the supplies of raw materials and the statistics for imports in the industry (again for the period January-September 2009) confirm imports of 1.232.000 tons for a value of 275 million Euros, showing a drop of -31,8% in quantity and – 29,7% in value.

Looking in detail at the export figures, there is a significant drop to North America where, compared to 2006 exports, the 2009 figures show a decrease of over 60% in value, even if the current euro-dollar exchange rate distorts the comparison somewhat. In terms of volume, however, the assessment is even worse.

There is a decrease in exports to the European Union too, but to a much lesser extent than in North America, with Germany, the "traditional client" recording a -17, 2% on value. Exports were down to the Russian Federation too where the trend had been interesting, while the growth, albeit modest, for the minor countries in the Caucasian area is consoling.

There are however positive areas for exports such as Southern Africa, which shows positive figures in terms of volume and value, and the Far East and in particular China that imports raw materials and semi-finished products in marble in particular as well as both marble and granite finished products. The figures for this segment are still modest though if compared to the potential size of the market. India, on the other hand, recorded a decrease in volume, especially in terms of finished granite products, yet overall it held its ground, whereas the Middle East showed positive results in terms of value and slightly negative in terms of volume, especially as regards finished granite products, yet on the whole it fared fairly well with Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the Emirates. To this regard it should be remembered that the figures refer to September when the Dubai crisis was already well-known, at least in the industry even if it had not formally been exposed.