Italy auto market: ‘Without collapse it will be a crash’


Anfia, Unrae and Federauto experts agree: “Without public intervention at the end of the year we will reach just 1.2 million new cars registered and we will lose 40 thousand jobs”

The compass has been pointing for a long time now towards the Chamber of Deputies who, precisely on the day in which the market data for the first half of 2020 are disclosed, postpones the examination in the classroom of that Relaunch decree which is entrusted with the provision of incentives for the recovery of the sector. “While Germany, Spain and France have already approved support plans, the deafening silence of the Italian government continues” comments Michele Crisci, president of Unrae, the association of foreign car manufacturers, which reiterates that “Despite the almost complete reopening of the economy, the bleeding of registrations for the unprecedented crisis triggered by Covid-19 continues in June with a loss that, without the extra working day, would have been almost 30%“According to the data of the Ministry of Transport, the news speaks of a drop of 23.13% compared to the same month of 2019, but the overview of the entire first half of 2020 sees the market literally halving, with a a decrease of 46.09% which means 583,960 registrations against the 1,083,184 of last year. “Projecting the June figure on the second half of the year, the market would lose another 200,000 registrations; these, together with the half million lost in the first six months, would translate into a drop in the demand for passenger cars in 2020 to 1,200,000 units“- concludes Crisci. Worried tones shared also by Paolo Scudieri, president of Anfia according to which”in addition to the slow pace of recovery in sales, there is also the expected effect on the purchase incentives that have been discussed for months but which, for now, have not been translated into reality, with a culpable delay compared to the other major European countries“.

Stock issues

Among the most punctual reactions, Paolo Scudieri for Anfia perhaps introduces the most disarming aspect generated by the lockdown to the automotive sales sector in Italy. “The stock of vehicles accumulated by manufacturers and dealers in recent months is hindering the restart of industrial production in the automotive supply chain“. Gian Primo Quagliano, president of the Promotor Study Center, instead, quantifies a phenomenon of unimaginable proportions:There are around 500,000 unsold cars in stock and the financial situation of many dealers is highly critical. In the first six months of the year the sector had a loss of turnover of about 9 billion with direct damage also for the tax authorities, which lost almost 2 billion in revenue for VAT only“.

Comparing the half a million cars left in stock with the 583,960 sold outlines a difficult commercial paradox for companies, a position well represented by Adolfo De Stefani Cosentino, president of Federauto, the Federation of car dealers: “The market cannot recover with the only promotional offers that the various brands have put in place and the autumn freeze is approaching with great strides. The further we go on, the greater the risk of closure in the coming months of hundreds of companies in the automotive distribution chain, which would dramatically accompany the disappearance of 40,000 jobs.“. A number linked to the sales sector, to which according to Michele De Palma, national secretary of Fiom-CGIL should be added “260 thousand male and female workers, in production alone and driving other sectors, put at risk by the absence of an industrial policy“.

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