Imprese e Covid-19: contesto e scenario | CDP

Companies and Covid-19: a review six months after the start of the crisis

The brief brings the series of sectoral investigations carried out in the core months of the crisis to a close, investigating the impacts of the Covid-19 emergency on the Italian production system and strategic supply chains, with a focus on opportunities for restarting.

The difficulties that have emerged during these months have highlighted the different characteristics of Italian companies on the one hand, while emphasising the changes taking place and the possible ways to seize new opportunities on the other.

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  • The pandemic and months of lockdown have had a profound impact on the Italian production system as the result of a contraction of industrial production, the closure of entire service sectors and the drastic reduction in consumption.
  • It is estimated that during the most acute phase of the health emergency the suspension of activities affected 2.1 million companies, equivalent to 40% in terms of turnover and value added.
  • However, analysis of some of the strategic supply chains for the national economy shows that not all sectors have been affected equally by the effects of the containment measures.
  • In particular, sectors that are heavily affected by demand dynamics and the continuation of social distancing measures (tourism, leisure and transport) continue to suffer significantly.
  • On the contrary, the companies that seem to have reacted best are those who were able to reorganise production in the light of the new environment, thanks to the characteristics of resilience and adaptability. These are more organised, productive companies that are accustomed to international competitiveness and positioned in higher value added and more innovative sectors.
  • The suddenness and depth of the ongoing crisis has, on one hand, highlighted the different characteristics of Italian companies, while on the other hand, it has emphasised the transformations taking place and the possible drivers to fully recover a growth path.
  • There are two main drivers: the spread of digital, which has highlighted the potential for development both in the range of tailor-made products, and the involvement of consumers in an increasingly 360 degree shopping experience; the focus on sustainability and circularity in the production and enjoyment of goods and services.
  • It remains to be seen whether the changes initiated will be temporary or if they will affect the Italian and global business and economic system structurally.
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