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Destination India for Italian industriesnews
15 November 2006

Chennai: Italian prime minister Romano Prodi is expected to lead a delegation of around 150 Italian businessmen during his Indian visit next year. Italy has declared 2007 as the year of Italy in India.

According to Vittorio Mecozzi, trade commissioner, Italian Trade Commission, Mumbai, India is now the focus country for Italy and most of the latter''s overseas investments will be here. "Italy will showcase its strengths in textiles, automobiles, food processing, defence and life style sectors to the Indians."

The bilateral trade between India and Italy is around $4 billion with the balance of trade in favour of India. During 2004-05 Italy ranked fourth amongst the 25 European Union countries in imports from India ($2,165 million) and is the fifth largest exporter to India ($1,325 million).

During April 2005-March 2006 India''s total imports from Italy amounted to $1.8 billion while Italy''s total imports from India was $2.4 billion. In terms of overall Indian imports and exports, Italy ranks 17th and 9th respectively.

Majority of the exports comprise investment and technological goods, unfinished goods for industry with an interesting presence in durable goods.

Meanwhile, India and Italy have also decided to set up a Joint Working Group (JWG) on infrastructure, which would provide necessary structure for enhanced cooperation, and building business ties in this sector. The objective of this is to spur Italian investments that would also bring Italian technology for India''s infrastructure. The first meeting of the JWG will be held in New Delhi in January 2007. It has also been decided to intensify cooperation in the food-processing sector.

As a part of promoting Italy to Indian businesses, the Italian Trade Commission, Indo Italian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Cultural Institute and ENIT (Italian State Tourist Board) and the Italian Embassy is holding a month-long Italian Festival called the Festa Italiana 2006 in India.

During this period the Italians will showcase the best of the `Made in Italy'' in sectors like food processing, chemicals, tourism, textiles, life style, ceramics and wine, to Indian industry through seminars, round tables and B2B meetings. In addition, seven Italian universities will also present their courses in ICT, industrial design and management to the Indian students.

The festival will be held in the four Indian metros — Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Bangalore and Chennai. Apart from the business meetings, the month long celebration includes festival of Italian films, Italian language day, Indo-Italian musical evening and wine tasting session.

According to Sergio Sgambato, secretary general, The Indo Italian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Festival Italiana has over the last four years grown to be recognized as a platform that has contributed significantly to the India-Italy partnership. "The emphasis this year will be on furthering the trade and business ties."


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Destination India for Italian industries