ArmInfo. With the purpose of development of bilateral trade and economic connections, the Development Fund of Armenia (DFA) and Italian Institute of Foreign Trade (ICE) signed memorandum on mutual understanding. The sides came to agreement on cooperation of Armenian-Italian business circles, mutual information provision on coming activities, exhibitions, working visits and elimination of factors which are obstacles to the growth of investments and bilateral trade.
As the DFA press service told ArmInfo, the signing of the memorandum took place in the fields of Armenian-Italian business forum, held within the framework of meeting of the Armenian-Italian interparliamentary commission in Rome with support of DFA.
"The government nowadays takes many steps aimed at improvement of business environment in Armenia, exclude bureaucratic red tape. Our Fund is ready to assist and provide consultations at any moment, includingg Italian partners", said DFA Executive Director Armen Avak Avakyan.
To note, during the forum, 26 Armenian businessmen presented Armenia's investment opportunities to 170 potential partners, in particular, in processing agricultural products, renewable energy, IT, textile and shoe industry, tourism. The meetings took place in the B2B format between interested parties, where the opportunities for export of Armenian products and investment programs were presented. To recall, the Institute for Foreign Trade of Italy (ICE) - a government organization engaged in the development and promotion of trade between Italy and other countries. It supports Italian companies in the process of internationalization and development of foreign markets, promotes industrial investments in Italy and abroad. In addition, ICE is actively involved in the training of Italian and foreign managers working in international markets and promoting the production of "Made in Italy". The headquarters of ICE is located in Rome and has an extensive network of representative offices in Italy and abroad (17 regional offices in 83 countries). According to the National Statistical Service of Armenia, the foreign trade turnover between Armenia and Italy in 2016 amounted to $ 160.8 million, with an annual decline of 11.2%. Exports fell by 2% to $ 31.9 million, with a 13.2% drop in imports to $ 128.9 million. Meanwhile, in the first quarter of 2017, the dynamics of mutual trade between Armenia and Italy shows a flat trend. In the frequency, the foreign trade turnover for the reporting period increased by 23.4% to $ 34.3 million, with exports growing by 43.9% to $ 5.8 million, and imports - by 19.9% to $ 28.5 million.