More than 50 people attended the Italian Association of Furniture Manufacturers recently.
The event was held to promote the MADE Expo (Milano Architeturra Design Edilizia) in Milan from October 5-8.
The UAE Italian ambassador, Giorgio Starace, said he wanted to push the availability of Italian products in the region and said Dubai was the number one city in the Middle East receiving EURO $3.6 billion of products a year from Italy.
He added that the UAE Minister of Finance was going to go to Rome, on June 7, as part of a relationship building exercise with the department of foreign affairs in Italy and said the UAE is Italy’s seventh largest trading partner in the world.
“We are exporting more goods to Dubai, which is an essential gateway to other parts of the Middle East, than Egypt and Saudi Arabia,” he said.
Other speakers at the event included Alberto Lauldi, vice president, Federlegno-Arredo. Abitare Italia, a project by FederlegnoArredo, promotes the value, quality and style of the Italian Abitare (living) sector worldwide.
It creates cultural and commercial events to promote Made in Italy products in foreign markets. Small to medium sized companies involved in the project are assisted in export communication and distribution.
Farida Kamber Al Awadhi, president APID (Association of Professional Interior Designers) also attended the networking session to talk about the organisation and to encourage more people to become members.
She said now was a good time to join APID because the economic crisis is disappearing and ‘the wheel is starting to turn again and business will be back to normal sooner than we expect’.
Visitors to the event included Daniela Rossi of Autentico Living Dubai, who sources products from little known designers in Italy and sells them in her showroom here and Kathryn Brown of H2O Concepts, authorised dealers for Herman Miller in KSA, UAE and Oman.