Shipbuilding in Italy, 1861-1913:The Burden of The Evidence

Ciccarelli CarloFenoaltea Stefano
CEIS Research Paper
Shipbuilding in post-Unification Italy is here documented by new national and regional time series. Where the extant national series point to secular decline, the new estimates reveal a major increase in output tied primarily to the growth of repair work on the one hand and of naval construction on the other. The regional estimates, which have no precedent in the literature, point to considerable concentration: Liguria accounted for more than half the product, and Campania for almost another quarter. Again, while in most regions shipbuilding was barely significant, in Liguria it represented up to a quarter of total industrial production. The further disaggregation of naval construction points to significant exports, from the 1890s, by the private yards in Tuscany and Liguria; the consensus view that Italy's engineering industry was then too backward to export at all is clearly unfounded.
Number: 137
Volume: 6
Issue: 11
Date: Monday, December 15, 2008
Revision Date: Monday, December 15, 2008