No. 22 - The economy of the Italian regionsShort-term dynamics and structural features

At a glance

In 2018, GDP growth, though still positive, slowed in all macro-areas of the country. According to preliminary estimates provided by Istat, in 2018 the growth rate peaked in the North-East while it was slowest in the South.

According to the Bank of Italy indicator that monitors quarterly economic activity in the macro-areas (ITER), GDP weakened in the second part of the year in all macro-areas, especially in the South and in the North-West. The slowdown continued in all macro-areas in the first half of 2019: compared with the corresponding period in 2018, economic activity increased slightly in the North-East and in the Centre, remained stable in the North-West and decreased slightly in the South.

The gap between the South and the rest of the country remains wide. Compared with 2007, in 2018 GDP was still lower by around 3 percentage points in the Centre and North and by around 10 points in the South. Demographic developments attenuated the divergence in per capita terms because the population of the Centre and North grew much more than that of the South, owing to migration both within Italy and from abroad. Between 2007 and 2018 GDP per capita fell by about 7 percentage points in the Centre and North and by 10 points in the South.

While remaining on an expansive path at national level, in 2018 employment stagnated in the South. Consumption decelerated in all macro-areas, presumably reflecting a decrease in consumer confidence.

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