According to the most recent data on Italy’s gross national production levels (PIL), the country can now technically consider itself in recession. Prime Minister Berlusconi, however, does not agree and has in fact stated that the country is not experiencing a recession, just a temporary drawback created by the fact that Easter occurred in March this year and many Italians’ decided to go on vacation for the holidays.
The data under concern is from the first quarter of 2005, which marked a 0.5% decrease in production. Many sectors of the Italian economy had already recorded a serious decline in production levels over the past year. Transportation has fallen by 4% and pharmaceuticals by 5%. But the hardest hit sectors are the textile industries, which have production levels at -11%, and the shoe industry, which has fallen 16% over the past year.
Overall, total production levels have fallen by 5.2% since March 2004.