Informations and abstract
Keywords: Industrial Structure, Chemical Industry, Firms, Industrial Policy
The paper aim is to highlight the transformation of the chemical industry in Italy, after the declining of the large companies (Montedison, Enimont, Snia, etc.) and the rising of many medium- sized firms that have a good international competitiveness. The paper explores the characteristics of the sector: large presence of foreign MNEs, strong links between chemical industry and industrial district productions, high company specialization. The focus is on the competitive advantage of the Italian medium-sized firms, mainly based on endogenous factors, such as product specialization, product innovation and worldwide exports. Main problem at firm's level is the management of exogenous constraints, such as EU regulations, EU climate change policy, Italian R&D infrastructures. The descriptive analysis shows the deep evolution of medium- sized firms: their niche specialization needs to enlarge the company's market by worldwide exports, and it asks for R&D investments in order to become a «global niche leader».