Italy third global supplier of sporting goods to UAE market

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Mattar A Tayer is greeted by Lucia Martorelli during his visit to the Italy Pavilion at Dubai Active Show on Friday.

Sajjad Ahmad, Deputy Business Editor

Italy is the third global supplier of sporting goods to the UAE market and it exports an average of 50 million euro worth of products to United Arab Emirates every year. Italy’s global exports of sporting goods touches around 12 billion euro on annual basis, this was revealed at the Dubai Active Show on Friday.

Earlier, Italy inaugurated its national pavilion at the Dubai Active Show, the Middle East’s leading Fitness and Wellness Trade show that will run until Sunday at the Dubai World Trade Centre.

Mattar A Tayer, Deputy Chairman of Dubai Sport Council, visited the Italy Pavilion during his tour of the exhibition.  Maria Lucia Martorelli, Deputy Director of the Italian Trade Agency, welcomed Mattar A Tayer at the Italian Pavilion.

Located in DWTC- Zabeel Hall 5 the Italy Pavillion is organised by the Italian Trade Agency in cooperation with Assosport (the association of Italian sporting goods industry) and powered by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation. The Pavilion gathers a selection of Italian SMES operating in the wellness industry and showcasing their latest devices and equipment, from biomedical devices and tools for aquatic fitness to trekking poles integrated with digital technology for the measurement of outdoor activities and food and skin supplements.

Wellness is rising as a priority among consumers around the world, the fitness industry has been booming and more and more companies are designing products that support and encourage a healthy and active lifestyle. Italy is an advocate of wellness as a way of living and it is one of the global leaders in the manufacturing of sportswear and of sport equipment.

The Italian sport industry has over 750 companies, employs more than 30,000 direct employees and generate around 10 billion euros in revenues, exporting 70% of the overall production. Foreign customers research the “Made in Italy” quality that they know is a guarantee of high quality, high level of technology and now also sustainable production.

Lorenzo Fanara, Ambassador of Italy to the UAE highlighted that “the Active Show will be an opportunity for Italian companies geared towards the fitness market to showcase their qualitative excellence, a worldwide benchmark for technical innovation and style. Mens sana in corpore sano, “a healthy mind in a healthy body”, continues to inspire Italy’s approach to lifestyle and wellness and Italian companies exhibiting at the Active Show look forward to sharing our expertise and technology with UAE and international customers.”

Amedeo Scarpa, Italian Trade Commissioner to the UAE added “For the Italian companies operating in the sport industry, export represent an important part of their annual turnover. Here in the UAE, Italy is the third global supplier: in 2021, UAE import from Italy of sport products increase by 38% compared to previous year. Latest figures report a positive upward trend also in the 1st semester of 2022 with a growth of +22%. The demand for Italian food supplements has been increasing, with a growth of +43% from 2020 to 2021. Moreover sport equipment Made in Italy are largely used in most of Emirati gyms and fitness centres. Our motto at Dubai Active Show 2022 is “Sustainability is Sustainab-ITALY”: a growing number of  Italian companies are engaged to become more sustainable and efficient. According to a recent survey conducted by Assosport and University of Padova, Italian companies in the sport sector are embracing a more sustainable approach along the entire supply chain in order to minimize the negative environmental impact”.

The survey shows that 61% of sporting good manufactures invest more than 10% of their total investments in Circular Economy projects and sustainability. This percentage is expected to increase substantially: in the next 3 years investments in circular economy will increase on average by 5%, reaching almost a quarter of total investments made. Sport Industry has been particularly committed in actions aimed at cutting emissions (56%) and resources / materials used (55%) and at reducing the amount of waste and refuse (33%).

Maria Lucia Martorelli said,” Italian Trade Agency is very active in participating in trade exhibitions around the globe to showcase new products and innovation. This is our second participation in the Dubai Active Show to present our latest and innovative sports goods to the regional distributors and partners.”

She added,” The UAE is very important market for Italian companies. This show is a good platform for our companies. We will be having a lot of B2B meeting during the 3-day event, which will play a big role in making new business agreements.” About sustainable growth, She said,” Sustainability is our main focus in transition towards a green economic growth. Italian companies are bringing more sustainable products and solutions to every trade exhibition.”

Commenting on the results of the survey, Anna Ferrino, President of Assosport said, “There is an undeniable awareness of Italian sporting goods industry about sustainability and environment.

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