Resorting to stereotype, especially regarding nations, often leads us to making rash and superficial opinions.
For example, when we think of â€śItalyâ€ť, what immediately springs to mind?
Good food, pizza in particular. A lack of responsibility. A fun, rather lazy life style, much as Sorrentino depicted in â€śLa grande bellezzaâ€ť.
Is this all there is to Italy? Of course not.
To scratch the surface, the Ministry for Economic Development recently made â€śItaly the Extraordinary Commonplaceâ€ť, a video shown at the Davos World Economic Forum which tries to break up myths and stereotypes of the Belpaese, and introduce her hidden qualities.
Italy as a country of Latin lovers? Perhaps, but it also ranks fifth in the world for exports of manufactured goods. Are we a country of eternal Peter Pans? Actually, the third nation to have sent a satellite into space.
Lesser known talents and records, such as the fact that Italy is still among the top three exporters in over 20% of todayâ€™s commercial sectors.
An example? How about nine!
Luxottica, a global leader and holder of legendary brands such as Ray-Ban and Oakley, may suffice to giving an idea of Italyâ€™s importance in the sector, thanks to the synergy between high technology and unmistakeable taste and style.
Tiles and similar products have a deep-rooted tradition, and an equally solid reputation abroad, so much so as to be among the most imitated and counterfeited. Italian quality and uniqueness, however, remains a global number one.
Weapons for sport
Italy is a world leader in the sector of sports weapons, for hunting and small guns, and for personal defence, with a global share of 20%. For decades, brands such as Beretta have been standard bearers for the Made in Italy name.
Certified Food Industry
Excellent food, almost always certified as a further guarantee of quality. Italy beats France and Spain with 269 PDO, PGI and TSG products. A success which, especially in the U.S.A., has won over great and generous aficionados.
Bikes are a completely Italian passion. And no, weâ€™re not (only) talking of Aprilia, Ducati or Guzzi, Vespa and Lambretta, but the ones with a saddle and pedals, of which Italy is amongst the top exporting countries in the world.
Washing and ironing machinery
Did you know that seven dry-cleaning machines out of 10, in the world, are Italian? A number that is constantly on the up even for wet-washing, despite the economic crisis and growing delocalisation.
Taps and fittings
Staying on the subject of cleaning and similar, Italy also ranks amongst the top in the world in the production of taps, a sector in which Italian products count for 15% in the world, with 4,000 companies and over 10,000 employees.
Footwear and leather goods
Artisan savoir faire meets the design and imagination of our creative talents for a sector that is worth 2,700 million in exports alone, which has grown above all in the luxury sector.
Automation and mechanics
for many years now, this sector has been one of the most important in Italian exports, but packaging machines are also worth a mention being second in the world only to Germany by just two points.
So, Italy exports more than just food and clothes. The high quality sectors of the Made in Italy name continue to grow, offering huge possibilities also to growingleader.