Trade Strengthens Between UAE and Italy

by Mahak Mannan | Published 9 months ago

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Trade between Italy and the Middle East reached over €900 million in professional hospitality and approximately €440 million in F&B in the first semester of 2018.

IMG_3840An event for the region’s food, agriculture and hospitality professionals took place in Dubai last week focusing on Italian taste and lifestyle organised by Fiera Milano: HostMilano, one of the world’s leading events for the professional hospitality industry in all its forms, and TUTTOFOOD, Italy’s international food and agriculture trade fair.

The theme of the convention was Innovation and Excellence to Support the Growth of the Food & Hospitality Sector in the Gulf and involved about 70 selected representatives of the region’s business community, including 50 buyers from the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, and Bahrain.

The interest the event attracted reflects opportunities in the growing trade between the two countries. According to figures from the Ulisse Information System, the region’s markets imported professional hospitality products worth of more than €12 billion last year, and Italy represented about 8% of these imports, worth about €915 million. The area’s imports have grown by a total of €2.9 billion over the past 5 years and Italian sales have grown by €252 million. The forecast for 2018-2021 suggests that imports in the sector will grow by an additional €1.9 billion in the area.

According to ISTAT and ITA Agency figures, Italian trade in F&B with the Middle East was worth about €410 million in exports and more than €26.5 million in imports in the first half of 2018 alone. Baked goods (€106.6 million) and miscellaneous food products (€154.4 million) are the most demanded products exported from Italy to the Middle East, while the biggest imports are processed preserved meats (€14.8 million) and processed and frozen fruit and vegetables (€4.2 million).

The leadership in the industries they serve makes HostMilano and TUTTOFOOD the ideal setting for taking advantage of these opportunities for growth, for both exhibitors and professional buyers.

The event was organised by Fiera Milano and significant stops on the promotional tour include, in Mexico City, Lima, Munich, Moscow, Boston, Chicago, Las Vegas, and  Orlando in addition to several locations within Italy.

To find out more about HostMilano visit

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