Paolo Barbieri, Luciano Fratocchi

Reshoring to Italy: A first characterization and a comparison to Europe and North America

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: Reshoring; EU; USA; Italia; Manufacturing.

This paper offers the first characterization of the manufacturing reshoring phenomenon for Italy, one of the countries that are more invested by this recent trend. As such, it fills a gap in the extant literature. The study is based on secondary data gathered through a number of different sources over more than 5 years' time. Data are analysed in order to provide information on: geographical areas from which companies move back home; industries they belong to; time span; governance structures (insourcing vs. outsourcing); decision drivers. The 121 investigated Italian cases are compared to the other European cases (256) and the North American ones (329) - thus providing an original perspective. In so doing interesting highlights emerges useful to characterise the phenomenon in Italy. Main outcomes of the study are: - in Italy, reshoring is limited to a small set of industries compared to the other two sampled geographical areas; more specifically, fashion-related industries (apparel, textile, footwear, leather goods, and accessories) are by far the prevailing ones; - similarly to the rest of Europe, firms reshoring to Italy generally leave from both, other European and Asian ones. The share of these two areas is quite similar. Instead, the vast majority of companies reshoring to North America moved back from Asia; - Italian companies reshore outsourced activities more than the European ones, i.e., their share of offshore outsourced activities that is brought home is comparatively higher; - there are some differences in the motivations for reshoring between Italian companies and those of the other two samples. More specifically, an unique to the Italian cases, the «made-in effect» emerges as the main driver. The comparative analysis we conducted suggest useful insights for policy makers in order to develop initiatives to trigger a further increase of the reshoring phenomenon in our country.

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