The show will run till May 27.
Dignitaries present at the opening ceremony included Sheikh Tariq Bin Faisal Al Qassimi, Chairman, the Department of Economic Development, Sharjah; Sheikh Mohammed Bin Saud Al Qassimi, Chief of the Administrative and Financial Department, Sharjah; Ahmed Mohammed Al Midfa, Chairman, Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry; Mohammed Salem Al Mosharrekh, Board Member, Sharjah Chamber of Commerce & Industry; Mauro Marzocchi, Secretary General, Italian Chamber of Commerce in the UAE & GCC (Ro); Dr. Ferdinando Fiore, Trade Commissioner, Italian Trade Commission; and Fasahat Ali Khan, Acting Director General, Expo Centre Sharjah.
“While the previous edition of the show introduced the Italian companies to the local market, the second edition will help them to build on the business relationships established during the first show and strengthen their presence in the region,” said Mr Midfa after the opening ceremony.
“It’s a win-win situation for both the countries. We set to gain from their technological know-how, innovation and top-of-the-range products. At the same time, the Italian firms get an opportunity to explore the local market and get a foothold in the region,” he added.
The show has registered a spectacular growth of about 60 per cent. The four-day event will witness the participation of over 250 exhibitors as against the 140 in the previous edition.
The exhibition space sold too has doubled with the exhibitors occupying 8,000 square metres in two halls this year compared to 4,000 square metres in one hall the previous year. Companies exhibiting under the umbrella of the Italian Trade Commission will occupy one full hall.
The exhibit profile of Italian products includes building materials, gift items, furniture, home furnishings and home decorations, crystals and glass, lighting, food products and fashion accessories.
The show also brings into focus the services provided by building contractors, architects and interior decorators. Apart from promoting investments, joint ventures and overall trade, their presence at the show will help introduce new concepts and designs to the region which is experiencing an unprecedented construction boom.
Major highlights of the show include a conference exclusively for women and live cooking demonstration.
The conference, titled “International Competitiveness Rules for the Producers and Guarantee for Customers,” will be organised on May 25 by the UAE Businessmen’s Association and C.N.A. & Confartigianato Women’s Association.
The live cooking demonstration, to be presented by the Italian Culinary Institute for Foreigners, is set to give gourmets a peek into the intricacies of Italian cuisine.
A total of 9,000 visitors, both trade and general, from 35 countries visited the previous show. For most of the exhibitors the show turned out to be an excellent platform for promoting their products not only in the UAE but the whole of the Middle East region.
The exhibition is organised by the Italian Trade Commission, the Italian Chamber of Commerce in the UAE & GCC Representative Office, ARTEX – Italy, and Expo Centre Sharjah and supported by the Ministry of Productive Activities – Italy, C.N.A.-Italy, Confartigianato-Italy and the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Tuesday, May 24- 2005 @ 12:12 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.