The association, which represents 221 firms who produce 90% of the machinery coming out of Italy, has also found that just over20% of Italian firms reported a growth in production during the quarter, with 17% claiming a decline.

The buoyancy of the woodworking machinery sector means that the employment field also remains positive, according to ACIMALL, with more than two-thirds of the firms it quizzed on their performance during the first quarter reporting a stabilisation or growth in jobs.

Overall, the association has said that the industry is in a state of “serenity”, with 55% of Italian firms expecting foreign orders to remain stable and 48% predicting the same from the home market.