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A strong economic system

Lombardy produces 20.6% of the national added value: first  place in Italy and fourth place in Europe. Thanks to its fortunate geographical setting and its dynamic business system, it is also the first Italian region both for its volume and value of commercial exchange with foreign markets.

Lombardy is the seat of the Italian Stock Exchange, one of the most important European financial centres, and accommodates the largest trade fair site in southern Europe, with an area of over 2 million square metres. The reliability of the Lombardia economic system is endorsed by the Moody agency report, which conferred a very high rating (Baa1) on the region.

The privileged geographic position and the entrepreneurial inclination of its people have allowed Lombardia to operate on the national and international scene as an accredited dynamic interlocutor from an economic point of view, and to become one of the most industrialised areas in Europe.

An economic system mainly focused on small and medium sized enterprises, but also reinforced by the presence of large industrial groups. Part of the Milan-Turin-Genoa industrial triangle during the Italian economic boom of the ‘Sixties”, Lombardia has addressed the challenges of modernisation, playing a protagonist role as one of the four Motors for Europe, the network of the most advanced European regions which includes Baden-Württemberg (Germany), Rhône- Alpes (France) and Catalunya (Spain).

Enterprises based in Lombardia are approx. 800 thousand, distributed over 16 industrial districts (local production systems characterised by a significant concentration of production sector-specialised firms), and 5 “metadistricts” (production areas of excellence having strong bonds with the spheres of research and innovation). The districts are specialised in all the traditional Made in Italy domains such as fashion and furniture-decoration, but also in all the new technology-dominated ones, such as electronics, industrial automation and robotics. The first five identified metadistricts deal with alimentary biotechnology, nonalimentary biotechnology, design, fashion and new materials. In a highly dynamic industrial context, craftwork enterprises still represent one third of the production sector, employing 17% of the Lombard workforce.

Regione Lombardia launched some years ago a strategy built on action and measures to focus projects and available resources on an handful of priority fields and industries. 


Smart Specialisation Strategy for Lombardy (RIS3) helps to build connections of ideas, finance and trade with similar activities elsewhere becoming a long term strategic framework. The identified challenge is to support, to accelerate the transformation of traditional and/or mature industries in emerging industries.


Learn more, visit Lombardy Region’s Smart Specialisation Strategy.