South Tyrol, which has around half a million inhabitants, is an economic success story due to a number of different factors: a healthy mix of industry, trade, agriculture and services; a solid foundation of small and medium-sized companies, many of which are family-run; and a well-funded public administration. South Tyrol enjoys the highest labour force participation rate and the lowest unemployment rate in Italy. In other words: it is easier to find a job in South Tyrol than in many other regions in Europe, even in times of crisis.
A good 70% of jobs in South Tyrol are in the service sector: this includes tourism, a segment that has great need for manpower, and public administration. Nearly a quarter of the region’s more than 240,000 employees work in handicrafts and industry; the remainder works in agriculture.
Every sector of South Tyrol’s economy has success stories to tell. With 5.6 million visitors a year, the province’s tourism industry is a frontrunner in the Alps. The region’s gastronomy and wine-growing industry ranks right up there in gourmet guides with the top regions of Italy. South Tyrol’s handicrafts are known for their quality, far beyond its borders; there are local brands that have achieved widespread fame—even global market leaders. The renewable energy and Alpine technology sectors, which are two key industries in the province, provide for particularly interesting jobs and prospects.