Italian women’s fashion slightly down in 2012
It's a trend reversal for Italian women’s fashion. According to Sistema Moda Italia (SMI), an umbrella organization for the Italian fashion industry, sales of companies in the apparel, knitwear, haberdashery and leather goods sectors for women are expected to total 12.2 billion euros in 2012, a slight decrease of 0.7%, following two consecutive years of growth.
Italy’s domestic market continued to decline with sales down 5.1%. Once again 'Made in Italy' did manage some positive results through exports, which grew by 2.2% to 6.8 billion euros. Between January and October 2012, exports of Italian women’s fashion still declined on all European markets, especially to France (-1.9%), its most important market and to Germany (0.4%), its third largest market. In Spain, exports collapsed by a whole -6.2%.
However, for Italy’s second largest market Russia, exports rose 12.7% to 648 million euros, recovering to the level of 2008, when this market was the most important destination for Made in Italy womenswear.
Similarly, after the drop in 2009, exports to the United States continued the recovery they started in 2010. For the first ten months of 2012, Italian sales jumped 13.1% to 400 million euros. Exports to Japan are also in positive territory (+6.1). Sales to Hong Kong were down 2.4%.
In the last four months of 2012 (September-December), the decline in sales is expected to continue (-4%) compared to the same period in 2011. “The recovery phase for the industry and the Italian economy in general was again postponed due to stagnant domestic demand, not only in Italy, but in a large part of the euro zone,” concluded SMI in its preliminary study.
For 2013, Italian companies will once again have to rely on markets outside Europe while sales of women’s fashion stubbornly continue its decline in Italy and Europe
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