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ITALIAN INDUSTRY ATTENDS AERO INDIA 2009 TO DEVELOP ASIAN MARKETS
The Italian aerospace industry, which ranks fourth in Europe and seventh in the world, is one of the most important sectors of the national economy. This is largely due to the fact that the technology involved also has a positive impact on developments in other industrial sectors. One of the markets which the aerospace industry considers to be particularly important is that of India. This country, lying in a strategic geo-political position between the Western block and China, wants to affirm its importance amongst the world's military powers. The opportunity for us to test the market is the upcoming Aero India trade fair (www.aeroindia.in or www.aeroindia2009.com). This is both the main exhibition in India and one of the most important in the whole of Asia in the field of avionics, including air traffic control and satellite communications.
The 2009 edition of the fair is being staged in Bangalore from February 11th-15th, and Italy will be attending for the first time with a joint presentation organized by ICE (the Italian Trade Commission). ICE decided to include the Indian event in its promotional programme at the request of both businesses within the sector and of Aiad (the Association of Aerospace Industries, Systems and Defence). At the last event, in 2007, attended by 55 international delegations, the number of exhibitors had increased by 35% on 2005 (the event is staged every two years). The exhibition space amounted to 30,000 m², nearly 50% more than at the preceding exhibition.
The aim of ICE's first joint participation in the Aero India fair is to augment and consolidate the international contribution of the Italian industry and to focus its promotional activity on one of the most promising emerging markets outside Europe. The Indian government, with its powerful army employing 1.3 million personnel, is assigning an ever more important role to the aerospace and defence industry. In 2007 it allocated 2.4% of the federal budget (the equivalent of 20 billion dollars) for the modernization of internal security systems, transport systems and environmental monitoring systems. It is estimated that by 2010 India will have increased its passenger traffic by 50% and its cargo traffic by 300%.
The Italian defence industry, which, taking together the aeronautical, space and defence industries, has a turnover of about 12 billion Euros and employs more than 64 thousand personnel, is prominent in many fields. The helicopter industry, in which Italy is now recognized as one of the world leaders, is among the high-performance sectors likely to attract the attention of Indian buyers. But Italian companies can also offer long-standing expertise in the field of aeronautical organization and technology, with their experience in the research and development of materials, structures and technology, not to mention the know-how accumulated during their participation in important aeronautical programmes such as JSF and Eurofighter. Italy is the second European leader in the field of electronic defence systems. To sum up, Italy has earned great credibility in the space sector thanks to its promotion of national programmes and its participation in international programmes to develop advanced satellite systems for civil and military communications and for global surveillance, as well as scientific satellites and orbiting systems.