Investments, innovation and financial strategies in the Italian automotive supply chain

Publication Type:

Conference Paper

Source:

Gerpisa colloquium, Bordeaux (2024)

Abstract:

Automotive industry plays a crucial role in the European economy due to its heterogeneous composition including manufacturing and service firms. At European level, this industry provides 13.8 million job impacting significantly on labour market (European Commission, 2024). In addition, this sector expressively contributes to the air pollution, pushing European Commission and Governments to adopt policies for incentivizing innovation to reduce emissions, also considering the fossil fuel limited resources. The main regulatory framework in terms of green transition is the Green Deal collecting European initiatives designed to achieve climate neutrality by 2050 in Europe. Clearly, the Green Deal adoption is strictly linked to the Sustainable Development Goals of the 2030 Agenda where the attention to climatic change (SDG 13), health and consequently to well-being (SDG 3) is highly affected by a reorganization of production process and by the introduction of “green” innovation (SDG 9), as the electrification of vehicles.
Starting from the analysis of a new survey on the Italian automotive supply chain ran in the 2023, we will investigate the relationship between financial strategies and the degree of investments/innovations of these companies considering the traditional parts makers and the producers of the charging stations, that will benefit from the transition to the electric.
The transition to electric in the automotive industry is required by European Commission, and all supply chain firms are involved in reorganizing production process doing investments in innovative assets and technologies that can accelerate and improve the process. Even if the Green Deal adoption can be a challenge for the industry, it requires financial resources that are not always simple to provide, especially in Italy where firms are not large. In the analysed survey specific questions have been administered on the typologies of investments, innovations, and also on the difficulty to borrow (i.e., financial constraints). Our analysis aims at investigating the perception of firm to be under financial constraints in relation to investments and giving the possibility to highlight main difficulties of automotive firms to adapt to the Green Deal from the organizational point of view. From results and considering European supporting tools to access to finance for automotive SME and large firms (i.e., COSME), we will propose a set of suggestions on possible national policies oriented to support the automotive supply chain in the green transition.

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