5.5 - Change in Veneto
Data relating to the start-up and closing-down ratio of enterprises in Veneto in the period from 2000 to 2007 reveal that the average regional business balance (Note 1) was 0.5% compared to 1.3% at national level. 189 Veneto municipalities out of 581 had a higher balance than the regional one.
Verona is the province with the highest percentage of municipalities with a business balance above regional average, amounting to 59.2%. It is followed by Vicenza (37.2%), Treviso (31.6%), Venezia (25%) and Belluno (21.7%). In the provinces of Padova and Rovigo the percentage of municipalities with a business balance over the regional average does not exceed 20%.
Data at municipality level show clear differences between areas. Provincial capitals, municipalities near capitals and coastal municipalities, except San Michele al Tagliamento and Eraclea, show business balances above regional average. (Figure 5.5.1)
Among the trends that most affected the development of the regional business system the most significant is the economic transition from industry to services. As a consequence there is a fresh interest in the metropolitan areas of the biggest urban centres in Veneto. Cities, where business balances are by far higher than the national average, have become centres for services and appear to play a crucial role in gradually promoting a re-conversion of the regional economy to better qualified sectors. Metropolitan areas are the most suitable places for technologically highly advanced enterprises, research centres and services to production.
The central role of the largest Veneto cities in the development of the regional economy is confirmed by an analysis of data for 2005, which is the latest available year. By using the OECD-Eurostat (Note 2) classification it is possible to establish the extent and quantity of high-technology and knowledge-intensive production sectors that are rooted in the region. Analysis includes manufacturing activities, excluding low technology services in the fields of trade, tourism, logistics, financial services and business services.
In 2005 Veneto staff working for local manufacturing companies amounted to 612,500 units or 35% of all staff in the ASIA archive (Note 3). Of these, over 33,000 are employed in high-tech manufacturing. Over 310,000 are the Veneto staff employed in manufacturing sectors classified in the medium technology group. Within the services under consideration, excluding public and private organisations that are not in the ASIA archive, there are more staff in the traditional sector - about 505,000 - and in the market sector - over 209,000 - while the number of staff in technological and financial services is about 51,000. (Figure 5.5.2)
On the basis of this analysis high-tech and knowledge-intensive sectors as defined in the previous paragraphs have been assessed. A specialisation index (Note 4) is calculated at municipality level for these two items only in the OECD-Eurostat classification. In Veneto there are 106 high-tech and knowledge-intensive municipalities out of a total 581, which corresponds to 18.2%. Most of them are situated in the metropolitan area of the most important Veneto cities which confirm their central role in regional economic transformation.
Belluno is the province in Veneto with the highest number of high-tech and knowledge-intensive municipalities (40). The Belluno area is well-known as the excellence centre of Italian optical industry and hosts many leading manufacturing facilities in research and innovation.