PRISMA Top 3 Countries

Ways of doing business differ from country to country, so it’s often difficult for companies to assess the countries they export to.

Opportunities and risks when supplying to Austria, Germany and Italy.


What advantages are there for companies exporting to Austria?
Austria has a number of appealing advantages for exporters from other countries. For instance, Austria has a stable legal situation and contract certainty. Austria is also a highly attractive country for foreign exporters because of its close ties with Germany. Strong high-end technologies in various fields, such as the automotive supply industry, the aerospace industry, metal processing and electronics make Austria a popular export country.

What risks should companies be aware of?
Austria is developing very positively in a number of areas, such as tourism, construction and food retail. However, those industries are highly dependent on a range of factors. Aspects such as tourism or the award of public contracts in the construction industry may heavily influence Austria’s economic development.
In addition, there are numerous small and medium-sized enterprises in Austria, which traditionally have a low level of own funds. That internal factor also poses a certain risk with respect to such companies remaining in business.

What are the leading industries in Austria?
Austria can be proud to have leading companies of all sizes in many sectors. Each year, for instance, the business journal WirtschaftsBlatt compiles a list of the Austrian economy’s top performers - Austria´s Leading Companies 2015

What impact does the current economic situation have on our policy holders?
In Austria the current economic situation has not led to a revision of the Austrian risks. Austrian companies have learnt their lesson from the economic crisis and have since restructured and re-secured their financing. As a result, they are better positioned than before the 2008/2009 crisis, as is also shown by the stable insolvency figures. Sensitive fields at present are the retail sector and the metal industry.

What does the future hold for Austria?
Austria is and will remain the country where PRISMA has its greatest exposure and will continue to be an important target market for policy holders.


What are the advantages for an Austrian company of exporting to Germany?
Germany is and remains the main trading partner of Austrian companies, thanks not least to the similar way of life and mentality, which makes it easier to do business with one another. In addition, there are no language barriers.

Are there also risks?
Despite Germany’s economic situation remaining strong, Austrian exporters should carefully check and select their German business partners. Payment defaults and insolvencies may crop up even in Germany.

What are the most promising industries for exporters?
The leading industries in Germany are

  • supplies to industrial companies in Germany, such as automotive companies,
  • machine manufacturing and
  • the food sector.

What impact does the current economic situation have on our policy holders?
Austrian companies have excellent opportunities thanks to Germany’s currently strong economy.

What does the future hold for Germany?
Despite the risks mentioned above, Germany remains the main target market for Austrian companies.


What advantages are there for companies of exporting to Italy?
Italy is the next most important market for Austrian companies after Germany. One major advantage lies in the low logistics costs compared to other countries.
Long-standing business relations between Austria and Italy represent a further benefit. Each partner is familiar with the other’s way of doing things, which eases cooperation between the partners.

What risks should exporters be aware of?
The main risk when exporting to Italy lies in the country’s sluggish economy, which continues to depress consumer spending. Due to Italy’s weak economic development, many companies are heavily indebted, making them highly vulnerable to interest rate risk.
It is therefore important that Austrian exporters regularly monitor the Italian market to minimise the risks.

What are the leading industries for Austrian companies?
The leading industries and sectors in Italy are

  • the food sector,
  • environmental and energy technology,
  • the infrastructure sector (rail, road, energy),
  • supplies to heavy industry and
  • the services and catering industry.

What impact does the current economic situation have on policy holders?
Owing to the current economic situation, payments are increasingly slow in the manufacturing industry. The reasons for that are the increasing reluctance of banks to grant loans and a decline for some time now in the added value generated by companies. In addition, unit labour costs are increasing even more sharply in Italy than in Austria.

What does the future hold for Italy?
Unless structural reforms are implemented, the Italian export market will decline in importance for Austrian companies. Even today there is falling demand in important fields such as the capital goods industry.

07 June 2016

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