Lombardy is still the leading Italian region when it comes to international trade and economic growth. Moreover, it does not limit itself to just one sector, thanks to its multifaceted strengths.
Led by Milan, a world-renowned hub due to its annual Fashion Week, Lombardy exports in the fashion industry amounted to 13.7 billion euros. This means that the region alone accounts to more than a quarter of the entirety Italian exports while Milan itself is worth 7.2 billion, a seventh of the statewide figure. This is what emerges following the publication of the latest report edited by the Milan Chamber of Commerce and Promos Italia, the internationalization agency of the Italian Chambers.
Following Milan, most of the region’s main cities also rank among the top twenty. Como placed 10th, Bergamo 12th, Varese 14th, and Mantua 18th. Other municipalities, such as Pavia and Lodi, were not as highly ranked but showed strong growth (+48.1% and +41.5% respectively). Lombardy mainly exports clothing items for 4.8 billion (+ 4.7%) and bags and leather goods for 2.3 billion (+ 14.9%). Among the provinces, in addition to Milan, first place in clothing, household linen, carpets, trimmings (while Bergamo is in second place) and furs, Mantua distinguished itself for knitwear, Como holds the second place for fabrics, Bergamo and Brescia were fourth and fifth for threads.
The three major foreign destinations for Italian fashion are France (10.4% of the total), Switzerland (9.9%) and Germany (8.9%). While France is the main partner for clothing, knitwear, carpets, footwear and furs, Hong Kong is the main buyer of sportswear, Germany is the first for fabrics, shirts and underwear, Switzerland for bags and leather goods, the United States for household linen, Romania for yarns, trimmings and buttons and Sri Lanka for laces. The biggest growths were recorded in the Asian markets. China and South Korea were up 17.8% and 13.3% respectively. The United Kingdom also performed well (+ 4.9%), as well as Morocco, thanks to fabrics (+ 23.2%), Slovakia (+ 329.2%) and Qatar (+ 70.8%) to carpets, Thailand to trimmings (+ 48.4%), and Austria to laces (+ 98.8%).
The government of the region also allocated 3.1 million euros to promote Lombard wines exports all over the world. These funds are just a portion of the national program to support the wine industry. This measure is particularly important given that, in 2017 and 2018, Lombard wines’ exports reached record heights; then again, it is not just a matter of quantity as 90% of the overall regional production can boast quality guarantees.