Machine Tools Italian machine tool orders plunge in Q2
Orders for Italian machine tools fell 20.6% compared to the year-earlier period due to the negative performance of manufacturers on both the domestic and export markets, the Italian engineering association UCIMU said.
Domestic orders were off 11.5%, a sign of weak Italian demand and “a structural crisis” in the home market that has drastically reduced investments in production technology, the association said. “The consistent decrease in demand requires immediate and direct intervention to prevent the loss of competitiveness from becoming irreversible.” Export orders dropped 23%, but overall the declines were “acceptable” because this year’s numbers were compared to the strong growth in the second quarter of 2011.
Dissipating domestic orders have stoked concerns among suppliers, UCIMU President Luigi Galdabini said. “Italian manufacturers of machine tools are extremely worried about the current situation. What is even more alarming is the trend of internal demand.” Despite the weak quarter, the association has stuck to its prediction that export sales will rise 12.3% to a new record of €3.7 billion this year.