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Italian SMEs keen to explore scope for cooperation with UAE contracting sector

United Arab Emirates: Wednesday, May 16 - 2007 @ 09:12

Even today, with the presence of more than 80,000 units, they enjoy a dominant position in the country’s industrial sector. In fact, Italy considers SMEs as a “strategic and critical resource”.

Now, many of these small and medium sized companies are eyeing the lucrative Middle East market for spreading their wings and are actively looking at entering in to strategic alliances in the region.

To explore such opportunities in detail, senior officials from the Italian Government and key personnel from several well-known Italian small and medium sized enterprises will address a Conference at Expo Centre Sharjah on May 30, 2007. The Conference will be held on the sidelines of the fourth Italian Lifestyle in the Emirates Exhibition, the Middle East’s largest display of Italian products and services.

Among those who would be addressing the Conference titled “Scope for cooperation between Italian SMEs and the Middle East Contracting sector” are Mr. Mauro Agostini – Undersecretary of State, Ministry Of International Commerce, Govt. of Italy, Mr. Ahmed Mohammed Al Midfa, Chairman – Sharjah Chamber of Commerce & Industry, Mr. Gianfranco Caprioli – General Director of Investment & Trade Promotion Department, Ministry of International Commerce, Govt. of Italy, H.E. Dott. Paolo Dionisi – Italian Ambassador to the UAE, Dr. Sauro Servadei – Director of Promotion, ARTEX, Italy, Mr. Humaid Salem Ahmed – General Manager, UAE Contractors Association, Mr. Giorgio Natalino Guerrini – President, CONFARTIGIANATO – Italy, Mr. Ivan Malavasi – President, C.N.A.- Italy, Mr. Paola Govoni – Partner CSIL Milano & Chief Editor of World Furniture, Mr. Gianluca Colombo – Toscana Contract Group, and Mr. Giorgio Palermo – Architect, Architectura Tecnologia Ambiente, Italy (ATA).

Major areas of focus at the event will be Trends in Furniture & Interior Design, Contract as an instrument for the internalization of the Small and Medium Italian enterprise, A business opportunity with the Toscana Contract Group in the Contracting sector, The Italian Design in the Emirates, Architectural Lighting & Interior.

Attendees at the Conference will include decision makers from the Middle East especially the UAE contracting sector who are interested in sourcing raw materials and entering in to partnerships with Italian SMEs.

The region’s contracting sector is currently experiencing phenomenal growth as a result of the booming construction industry. Within the GCC, the UAE is the largest construction market with more than USD $ 350 billion worth of active projects.

According to the Dubai Property Group (DPG), USD $ 463 billion have been injected in to the UAE freehold market with 30,000 units planned for delivery in 2007.

On the commercial office space front, over 24 million sq. ft is currently under development in Dubai alone.

“The Conference on scope for cooperation between Italian SMEs and the regional contracting sector is aimed at creating networking opportunities between key personnel engaged in the regional contracting sector, senior officials from the Italian Government, and top decision makers from SMEs in Italy,” said Mr. Saif Al Midfa, Director General, Expo Centre Sharjah.

“Whereas Italian SMEs are keen to enter the lucrative Middle East market due to its booming construction sector, for the contracting industry in the region, the interest mainly lies in sourcing high quality Italian manufactured building materials and interior décor products. The Conference will also provide Italian companies that are looking at appointing distributors and agents in the Middle East, ample scope to carry out discussions with their counterparts in the region. In other words, the event will bring together personnel from the Italian SMEs and the regional contracting sector on a single platform for constructive interaction,” he added.

SMEs employ a very significant portion of Italy’s work force. The products manufactured by the sector is considered to be world-class and exported to countries across the globe. Some of its key products include eye glass frames, high fashion designing, textiles and garments, gems and jewelery, leather products (shoes & hand bags in particular), granite, ceramics, glass metallurgical industry, soaps & cosmetics, transportation, machine tools, engineering goods, food processing industry, drugs and chemicals, domestic appliances, and auto components.

The fourth edition of the Italian Lifestyle in the Emirates exhibition, will be held at Expo Centre Sharjah from May 29 – June 1, 2007. It will host over 200 Italian enterprises featuring an array of high quality Italian products, services, and technologies.

The primary focus of this year’s Italian Lifestyle in the Emirates Exhibition will be on furniture, furnishings, home accessories, bathroom fittings, sanitary ware, kitchen fittings and equipment, windows and doors, flooring material, ceramic products and accessories, wooden products, metallic and compound materials, and lighting equipment.

A special section on high quality Italian food products and services will also be featured at the event.

A major attraction of the 2007 edition of Italian Lifestyle in the Emirates Exhibition will be the display and sale of Italian fashion products and accessories. The event will be an opportunity for the region’s fashion conscious to witness first hand the creativity, innovation, and impeccable style of the Italian fashion industry. The Italian fashion industry boasts of 70,000 companies and 700,000 professionals with annual revenues exceeding 48 billion euro.

The Italian Lifestyle in the Emirates Exhibition is jointly organised by the Italian Trade Commission in Dubai, Artex, the Italian Industry & Commerce office in the UAE, and Expo Centre Sharjah with the support of the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI).

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Wednesday, May 16- 2007 @ 9:12 UAE local time (GMT+4) Replication or redistribution in whole or in part is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Mediaquest FZ LLC.

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