Right now, the Italian plastics and rubber machinery manufacturing sector is in a good place, according to Amaplast. The association, representing some 170 major Italian companies in the plastics and rubber machinery, ancillary equipment and moulds industry, recently released its latest figures showing that orders were up 10% in the first six months of 2022 compared to the same period in 2021, with all signs pointing to the third quarter continuing that trend. The increase is mainly due to sales and orders from abroad, the association reported. Historically, exports have accounted for 70% of Italy’s plastics and rubber machinery production. This year, while sales to the European Union and North America have waned somewhat, the slack has been taken up by non-EU European, South American, and Asian markets. A shift was also seen in the performance - in terms of value - of Italy’s 10 most important markets. Sales to Germany, Poland, Mexico, Spain, India and the UK rose, whereas fewer machines were delivered to the U.S., China, France, and Turkey. Pointing to the figures published by the German VDMA Plastics and Rubber Machinery sector earlier this year, Amaplast noted that the situation in Germany differed markedly from that in Italy. The VDMA, confronted with a slowdown in orders, predicted a downturn for the ongoing year, with turnover in line with or only marginally higher than 2021. German exports grew an unimpressive 1% during the first six months of the year whereas the Italian plastics and rubber machinery manufacturing sector reported a 3% growth, the association reported. The market for Italy-produced extrusion equipment has performed particularly well, with sales up 25% compared to the previous year. Uncertainty about the future is rising, however. The current state of the economy is concerning in view of the soaring energy prices, which have served to exacerbate the components and raw materials shortages, which have characterised the previous months. Amaplast members will be a major presence at the upcoming K fair. Over 250 Italian plastics and rubber machinery manufacturers will be exhibiting this year in Düsseldorf, of whom half are a member. The focus is on sustainability and reducing the carbon footprint of the industry through developments such as energy-efficient machines and the use of recycled materials: as the association points out, the Italian plastics recovery sector alone ‘is worth more than double the European average’. The sector has grown strongly in the past 5 years, with advancements in technology enabling ever higher levels of sophistication in mechanical recycling.
Amaplast may be found at K in hall 16, stand A56.