Italy’s automatic packaging machinery manufacturers are the only Italian capital goods producers to report growth in revenues in 2019 (+2.2%), thereby confirming the world leadership position of a niche mechanical engineering sector, which for the first time in its history has broken the €8 billion euro revenue barrier. The number of operating companies decreased in 2019 (down 2.4% to 616) as a result of the series of M&As underway in the sector, while the number of employees rose to 33,304 (+2.1%).
These results were revealed in the Ucima-MECS Research Department’s 8th Statistical Survey, unveiled at the annual meeting held today in Modena. Over these last eight years (2012-2019), packaging machinery manufacturers have seen an almost 50% increase in turnover (from 5.5 to €8.04 billion), 40% growth in exports (from €4.56 to €6.35 billion) and the creation of 7,000 new jobs.
Around 79% of the sector’s turnover was generated abroad, amounting to €6.35 billion, an increase of 2.3% compared to 2018. This export growth is half a percentage point higher than that of domestic Italian sales (+1.8% in 2019 to 1.69 billion euros). The European Union remains the main destination area for Italian packaging machinery and accounts for 37.5% of total turnover (€2.38 billion) including sales in Italy, followed in second place by Asia with a value of €1.4 billion and a 22.1% share, then North America in third place with €814 million (12.8%). With respect to 2018, non-EU Europe (€637 million; 10% of the total) has overtaken South America (€559 million; 8.8%), followed by Africa (€449 million; 7.1%) and Oceania (€107 million; 1.7%).