Amidst a Global Economic Slowdown, Italy Positions Itself as an Attractive Investment Destination in the U.S.

Jan 18, 2016, 05:08 ET from Italian Trade Agency

SAN FRANCISCO, January 18, 2016 /PRNewswire/ --

"Italy is open for business." That is the theme leading Italian government officials are stressing during their investment drive across the United States, which includes meetings with large, innovative companies such as Google, Apple, Tesla and SpaceX.

"Italy is now in the right position to attract foreign direct investment," said the Vice Minister for Economic Development, Carlo Calenda during an interview on CNN's "Quest Means Business" program last week. "We have a very strong and vibrant industry, we're performing very well in exports and while the Far East and emerging markets are suffering, Italy has all the characteristics as the right place to invest."

Under the government of Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, Italy has pushed through many reforms in an effort to cut red tape, implementing measures "in scope and ambition unparalleled in our past," according to Calenda.

For the "Invest in Italy" roadshow, Calenda and his team are meeting with more than 30 potential investors in New York alone, including executives of General Electric Avio, the GE aviation business, which plans to invest about €200 million in research and development activities in three Italian regions.

In San Francisco, the delegation is participating at a conference entitled "Healthcare: Italy on the Move" in collaboration with JP Morgan Stanley, a symposium dedicated to the field of biotechnology and life sciences.
"For over 30 years, Italy has been the 2nd largest manufacturing economy in Europe after Germany," said Riccardo Monti, President of the Italian Trade Agency, which has become the one-stop shop and key interface for foreign investors. "Investing in Italy means having access to a strategic gateway of 500 million consumers across the European Union, 270 million in northern Africa and the Middle East as well as to unique export know-how in leading sectors such as machinery and automation, fashion, design and food."

The investment tour coincides with a €60 million "Extraordinary Italian Taste" public awareness campaign in the U.S.  to promote "authentic" Italian food, in light of a 180% increase of "Italian-sounding" foreign food products.
Italy is the third largest economy of the Eurozone and the 8th largest in the world with a GDP of more than $2.1 trillion, bigger than India or Russia.

SOURCE Italian Trade Agency