ACIMALL is the Italian woodworking machinery and tools manufacturers’ association and was established in Milan in 1966. It represents approximately 160 companies, which account for almost the entire revenues and export of the Italian wood working machinery and equipment industry. Acimall promotes several initiatives to support made-in-Italy production and produces annual reports.

The climate of recent times, characterized by a consistent improvement of all indicators, could not last forever. So, here was ACIMALL with some reflections starting from the trend emerging in the second quarter of this year, the widespread slowdown of orders. The traditional quarterly survey by Acimall reveals a 9.9% decrease compared to the same period of 2017. The reference quarter was one of the best, with significant growth rates, nevertheless the Italian suppliers cannot let their guard down. Orders from abroad are dropping dramatically, in fact minus 15.5% against the second quarter of 2017 but this was balanced by positive results in the Italian market which over the same period increased by as much as 29.4%.

If the introduction of new tariffs on a global scale, the increase of energy products and the financial instability of some emerging countries explain dropping export in the April-June 2018 period, ACIMALL can be happy with domestic sales supported by Industry 4.0 incentives producing their strongest impact. A survey for the April-June quarter indicates that according to 39 percent of the sample, the expected production trend is positive. The Italian manufacturers are still cautious with only 17% expecting an increase in orders from other countries including Australia.

During the general assembly held June 22nd President Lorenzo Primultini highlighted Acimall goals. First of all global promotion with the International trade show Xylexpo, that was, according to Primultini an ‘ace in the hole’ and hosting 425 exhibitors and 17,781 unique visitors totalling 37 thousand accesses. Primultini said “We are already working on the next show, supported by an industry that is healthy not only around the world, but also in Italy, where our industry reached a production value of 2,272 million euro in 2017, an increase of more than 10 percent compared to the previous year, with 1.4 billion euro export.”

Germany preserves its historical leadership with over 2.2 billion euro of equipment exported in 2017, mainly due to the lack of competitors in specific segments. Italy remains at number two with an extensive market coverage. Traditionally, Italian offers are mostly concentrated in secondary wood processing, especially panel processing. China maintained third position and has become an established manufacturer all over the world. Affordable prices have always been the key strength of Asian industries but in recent years the technological standards of machinery have improved, leading to an adjustment of consumer prices. The ranking of the top-six global exporting countries is completed by Taiwan, Austria and the United States.