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Italy experiences fall in footwear production

The latest data from Italian footwear manufacturers’ body Assocalzaturifici has revealed that the country’s shoe production fell 2.4% during the first nine months of 2018. This included a 5% drop in the third quarter alone.

Domestic consumption of footwear was weak during this period, down 0.8% in volume and 0.9% in value. They only segment that showed improvement was sports shoes and sneakers. 

The Italian footwear industry remains driven by exports, with marginally better news coming from overseas. During the first eight months of 2018, Italy exported shoes worth just under €6.5 billion, an increase of 3.7% compared to the same period of 2017. This occurred despite a 3.1% fall in the volume of the country’s footwear exports.

Annarita Pilotti, chair of Assocalzaturifici, said the figures “confirm the excellence of Italian manufacturing in the high-end segment.”

Despite improvement in terms of value, the overall volume of Italy’s shoe exports to European Union markets fell 6%. This was driven by reductions in exports to France (-8.7%), Spain (-9.8%) and the Netherlands (-13.9%). 

Outside of the EU, there was strong performance in China (+20% in volume) and South Korea (11%). There was also a 4.5% increase in the volume of exports to the US.

The struggles continued in Russia, however, with exports of Italian shoes to this country falling 11.3% in volume during the first eight months of 2018.

Image: Annarita Pilotti shows Italy’s economy minister, Luigi Di Maio, around the Micam exhibition in 2018.

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