Italy’s South: industry and start-ups are driving the (slow) recovery

Jul 21, 2017 1704

BY: Nicoletta Picchio

The recovery in southern Italy is continuing, driven by business. Gross domestic product (GDP) rose 0.9% in 2016, after +1% in 2015: moderate growth that should continue also in the first part of 2017. And it is industry in the strict sense which is fueling this trend: its value added rose in 2016 by 3.4%: two points higher than the Italian average, according to figures from the Check-up Mezzogiorno report compiled by Italian employers’ association Confindustria and SRM (the study center of the Intesa Sanpaolo group).

“The importance of the industrial question emerges,” which should be considered a “big national question” said Confindustria President Vincenzo Boccia, commenting on the figures. But unemployment remains high, at 21%. Even though employment is growing compared to a year before, up 1%, the rhythm is slower and in particular youth unemployment remains very high, at 56.3%, double that of the regions of the Center-North.

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