(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Two sides explore potential partnerships at uae-italian economic forum
sultan bin saeed al mansouri addresses a forum in marche italy. — supplied photo
italy is the second largest trading partner of the uae in europe and there is considerable potential to develop bilateral trade and business ties between the two countries.
“existing partnerships have enabled economic growth and innovation for businesses creating synergies for further development” according to minister of economy sultan bin saeed al mansouri.
the minister’s comments came at the just-concluded uae-italian economic forum that was held in marche italy. al mansouri led the high-ranking uae delegation comprising government officials senior representatives from the private sector and trade investors. the forum examined potential economic and trade partnerships towards attracting increased investments from the business communities in both countries.
al mansouri highlighted the robust relations that exists between the uae and italy and said the bilateral relations between the two countries have rapidly grown with the increase in trade and investments.
“in 2013 the volume of non-oil trade transactions rose to 6.05 billion. with an increasing number of new strategic agreements being signed we expect further development in trade and economic relations that will see transaction volumes climb exponentially” he said.
“italy has traditionally been a reliable trading partner for the uae across sectors and there is still potential to tap into new investments areas. the uae offers an investment-friendly environment with a transparent financial system and enabling legislations that support trade and business. the uae is also looking to work closely with the italian government in repicating its success in boosting the small medium enterprises (sme) sector” he added.
the uae and italy have also signed agreements on increasing economic industrial and fiscal cooperation. the two governments are seeking to protect the business community by agreeing to avoid double taxation of income and prevent fiscal evasion and fraudulent financial practices.
moving forward the two governments are working to establish a joint committee consisting of representatives from the uae federation of chambers of commerce and industry and the general confederation of italian industry towards enhancing trade between the two countries.
in 2013 the uae led the countries of the middle east and africa in attracting maximum foreign direct investments. currently more than 200 italian firms are based in the country.
in 2013 the uae’s foreign capital investment outside the country was valued at 14.68 billion. this figure equaled the amount (30.56 per cent) of foreign investments flowing out from the rest of the region.
carlo calenda italy’s deputy minister of economic development said the partnership between italy and the uae is poised to grow further. he said the uae is strategically located as a geographical midpoint between europe and asia facilitating logistics and serves as an important gateway for italian products to the region and vice versa.
“recently we have signed a number of memoranda of understanding (mou) covering various key sectors including culture arts and media cooperation which will lead to increasing the volume of business in the future. the uae’s ministry of economy has also partnered with the italian council for national research to drive growth innovation and research in the sme sector in the two countries” calenda said.