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Machines Italia

a delegation from the NCSU College of Textiles team up for a look at the latest in Italian Textile Technology.<i><b>TW</b></i> Special Report

Italian Textile Technology TW Special Report

Textile World and a delegation from the NCSU College of Textiles team up for a look at the latest in Italian textile technology.The Italian Trade Commission (ITC) and ICE Istituto nazionale per il Commercio Estero have united 14 leading Italian machinery manufacturers associations in a new initiative to showcase Italian-made machinery. These 14 associations represent more than 10,000 machinery manufacturers from industry sectors including agricultural/farming, ceramics, earthmoving, food processing, glass, iron foundry and metallurgy, leather and tanning, marble and stone, metalworking, packaging, plastics and rubber, printing, graphics and converting, textiles, and wood.Representing the global textile machinery industry is the Italian Association of Textile Machinery Producers (ACIMIT), a vital link between Italian textile machinery producers and textile manufacturers seeking the latest in technology.Flexibility, creativity and innovation are the three attributes most often cited by Italian equipment manufacturers as a credo for work, according to ACIMIT.In terms of flexibility, a typical Italian manufacturing company has just 70 employees, with company owners typically managing day-to-day operations. Quick response is common, and time and attention are given to developing custom solutions for customers.Creativity not just in food and fashion is part of the Italian tradition of outside-the-box thinking in design and engineering. From Leonardo da Vinci to Ferrari, Italians have followed the guiding principle that development can be achieved only by understanding the real needs of a situation and its intended influence. In the manufacturing arena, this approach translates into application-specific solutions to meet customer needs.Ingenuity and innovation thrive within todays Italian manufacturing industry, known for leadership in machine development, integration and technological advancement.
The NCSU delegation (left to right): Gary Mock, Ph.D., professor, textile engineering, chemistry and science department; William Oxenham, Ph.D., associate dean for academic programs, textileandapparel technologyandmanagement (TATM) department; Nancy Powell, associate professor, TATM; Alex Mussa, assistant trade commissioner, ITC; Abdelfattah Seyam, Ph.D., professor, TATM; and Behnam Pourdeyhimi, Ph.D., professor, TATM, and co-director, Nonwovens Cooperative Research CenterThe US ConnectionPast successes, along with US economic growth over the past decade, have made Italy the fourth-largest foreign supplier of industrial machinery and equipment to the United States, with exports totaling $1.6 billion in a market worth $20.3 billion.In the textile sector, Mauro Badanelli, an economist with ACIMIT, reports the value of Italian textile machinery produced in 2002 amounted to 3.4 billion euros an increase of 5 percent over the previous year, 71 percent (2.4 billion euros) of which was exported to 130 countries.Italian exports by sector illustrate the range of equipment available:spinning machines 21 percent;weaving machines 25 percent;knitting and hosiery machines 22 percent;finishing machines 24 percent; andlaundry, dry cleaning and other machines 8 percent.Although Europe purchases 43 percent of this equipment, Asia is on the rise with 41 percent, followed by North America with 7 percent, South America with 5 percent and Africa with 4 percent.Technology TourITC and ACIMIT hosted Textile World and a delegation from North Carolina State Universitys (NCSU) College of Textiles, Raleigh, N.C., during a recent tour of machinery and manufacturing facilities in Italy, offering a rare glimpse at the inner workings of the industry and what it has to offer. Alex Mussa, ITCs Atlanta-based assistant trade commissioner, coordinated and facilitated the tour.In addition to visiting manufacturers, the delegation met with ACIMIT President Alberto Sacchi; Badanelli; and Pietro Goglia, Italian Institute for Foreign Trade. Additional presentations by Tecnotessile S.r.l., Centro Tessile Cotoniero e Abbigliamento S.p.A. and Texilia Istituto per la Tradizione e la Tecnologia Tessile provided a look at the regional support of technical laboratories and research available to Italian textile manufacturers. June 2003