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ITALY IN PLOVDIV TO STRENGTHEN TIES WITH BULGARIA
In the first four months of 2008, exportation from Italy to Bulgaria has increased by about 93 million reaching over 572 million, +19.4%, in comparison to the first four months of 2007. During the same period Italian exports to all the 27 European Union countries, marked an increase of 5.6%. Therefore, if on an absolute level, the volumes currently remain low, the dynamics of trade with Bulgaria start becoming more and more interesting to Italy, especially when the economic dynamism of Eastern Europe is also taken into consideration: in 2007, the Bulgarian GDP increased by 6.2% to 28.9 billion Euros, a rate which is significantly higher than the European average variation during the same period.
To intensify the ties between the two economies, ICE, the Italian National Institute for Foreign Trade, has decided to organise and coordinate, again in 2008, Italy‚Äôs participation in the autumn edition of the International Fair of Plovdiv by means of collective participation. Evidence of the «special» link between the two economies, both economic and commercial, is that just three years after the 2005 edition, Italy has once again been designated as the partner-country of the event. Moreover, seminars and collateral events will be planned and these will emphasise Italy‚Äôs referential role as economic partner. One of the novelties this year, regarding the official, collective participation organised by ICE, is the setup - inside the pavilion ‚Äď of an «Italian Space» dedicated to the promotion of Italian excellence in agro-food.
Having reached its 64th edition, the event will take place in the city of Plovdiv from 29th September to 4th October, 2008. Having now become one of the main exhibitions in Eastern Europe, the fair represents the most important meeting in the technology and asset investment sectors, not only in Bulgaria but in the whole Balkan area. It holds the first place as is confirmed by the figures: the last edition of the event attracted about 139,000 visitors. There was also great international presence among the exhibitors: out of a total of 3,661, 2,325 were foreign (i.e. 63.5%) representing 49 countries. The exhibition is dedicated to several economic sectors: mechanical engineering, industrial machinery and equipment, transport vehicles and equipment for workshops; electronics and electrical engineering; technologies and equipment for telecommunication and information; environmental energy and protection; construction; chemistry; water treatment.
These are sectors that can find opportunities in an economy which is opening up more and more to international trade: in 2007 Italian exportation to Bulgaria increased by 12.2% to 13.5 billion Euros. During the same period, Italian export increased by 4.4%, rising from 1,823 million Euros in 2006 to 1,903.5 million. Italy is the third trade partner of Bulgaria after Russia (12.4%) and Germany (12.3%), with a market share of 8, 7%. The main sectors which are interchanged between Italy and Bulgaria are mechanical machinery and equipment and appliances (413.9 million Euros), textile products and knitwear articles (216.2 million Euros), metal and metal products (145.0 million Euros), motor vehicles (138.2 million Euros), footwear, leather and leather products (121.9 million Euros), precision machinery and instruments (109.9 million Euros). The 2007 dynamics of certain niche areas are interesting, such as «other general-purpose machinery» (+21.9%) and «machinery and equipment for the production and use of mechanical energy» (+33.1%).