Italian exports to China up 28.1% in February

15:37, March 23, 2010      

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Italian exports to China increased by 28.1 percent in February, according to preliminary data on the country's foreign trade trends released on Monday by the national statistics office Istat.

Istat's data showed that in February this year exports to the Extra-EU area increased by 2.3 percent and imports by 10.4 percent compared with the same month of the previous year.

This is positive news for the country, indicating an exit from recession. National exports suffered from the fall in global demand, but are now showing the first signs of revival.

However, according to some local economists, the recovery is slow and uncertain, hindered by the many obstacles the country's small and medium-sized enterprises face in penetrating foreign markets.

In the first two months of 2010, compared with the same period of 2009, Extra-EU exports increased by 3.3 percent and imports by 3.1 percent. The trade balance of the first two months of this year turned out negative by 4.817 billion euros, slightly worse compared to the deficit of 4.721 billion euros recorded in the same period of 2009, Istat said.

A good performance came from exports to non-European countries, with a surplus of 2.975 billion euros. In February, increases concerned in particular Turkey (+52.3 percent), the Mercosur countries (+43.6 percent), India (+33.2 percent) and China (+28.1 percent), demonstrating Italy's strategic focus on emerging economies.

At the beginning of March, the Italy-China Foundation stressed that Italian exports to China were the only ones to have grown during the recession because of the Chinese middle class' rising demand for Made-in-Italy products.

And forecasts are even brighter. Despite a fall in bilateral trade in 2009, Confindiustria, Italy's largest industry association, said it expected the figure to increase this year to 40 billion U.S. dollars.

Source: Xinhua
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