Assocomaplast, the Italian association for plastic and rubber processing machinery, estimates production will be worth €4.2bn this year, with exports of €2.6bn. The association examined imports and exports from the first nine months of the year and found that exports increased nine percentage points, while imports increased 2%. Compared to 2010-2011, the balance of trade for the sector increased 11% to €1.41bn. Europe is still the top export destination, accounting for 60% of the total, which is 11% more than in the January-September 2011 period. This market includes Russia in this case, which recorded a 26% increase in imports from Italy. North America is the second biggest export market for Italian machinery producers, with an 18% share of the total. However, exports to India, Brazil, Morocco, Egypt and the Middle East all declined during the first nine months of the year.