For the first time in Dubai “Speciality Food Festival” history, (whose 7th edition is taking place 7 to 9 November) Italy has been selected as “Country Partner” to the fair. A recognition of Italy’s global leadership as regards food. Italian Minister for Agricultural Policies Maurizio Martina and Under Secretary for Economic Development Ivan Scalfarotto participated in this event – one of the most important agri-food sector fair in the Middle East, particularly for gourmet high-end products. Minister Martina announced Italy’s formal accession to EXPO Dubai 2020 (the topic of which will be “Connecting Minds, Creating the Future”), during the meeting with Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of EXPO Dubai 2020 Organising Committee. Italy is the first G7 country to formalize its accession, and it passed on to the organizers Carta di Milano’s principles and values, together with 2015 Expo edition’s best practice.
ITALIAN EVENTS – The food fair inauguration coincides with the international preview of the first Worldwide Italian Cuisine Week, which will last until November 23 in the Emirates. As for food machinery, cooking equipment and food service industry 180 Italian companies will be present at Speciality Food Festival, in addition to 34 agri-food companies. They will be hosted right in the ICE space, 19 of which in the framework of South Export Plan, a European development program for industries coming from the four “Confluence Regions” (Calabria, Campania, Puglia and Sicily). In addition to a Service Center – available to all the Italian companies at Speciality Food Festival – a new space named “Breakfast Made in Italy” has been set up by CNA (Italian National Confederation for Craftsmanship and Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises), for the first time outside Italy. Moreover, thanks to ICE-Agenzia and Italian Cuisine World Summit, Italian companies at Speciality Food Festival will have the opportunity to participate with their products to a series of cooking shows and masterclasses presented by Steel Chefs.
EXPORT IN THE EMIRATES – United Arab Emirates are the main export market for Italian food products throughout the Middle East. In 2015, Italian exports reached €324 million, an all-time high, with an increase of 28,4% on 2014. In the first seven months of 2016, sales have suffered from a domestic demand slowing, with a fall of 4% compared with the same period of 2015.