Creating an Italian Export Network

Roberta Cutillo (June 05, 2019)
On June 14th and 15th, the Sorrentine Peninsula welcomes the first-ever edition of the Italian Export Forum, an initiative to bring together the main players, both entrepreneurial and institutional in order to create a unified and coherent system and maximise everyone’s profits and productivity. The idea is that this is not just a one-time event but the creation of a new network.

The Italian Export Forum (IEF) is not just a two-day event which will take place from the 14th to the 15th of June on the Sorrentine Peninsula, it’s a new multichannel platform with the goal of connecting Italian businesses and institutions in order to work together to better navigate the global market.

Italy is a great exporter: in 2017, it was the 3rd country in the world for export growth and the 9th for absolutely export value, with a total export volume of 448 billion euro.

However, according to the IEF, the different actors involved in exporting goods, services and ideas from Italy currently act separately in a fragmented manner that ultimately leads to overlap and dispersion. IEF organizers believe the country needs a global, integrated approach to export in order to optimize time and energy and raise the productivity of all the actors.

IEF poses itself as the ideal context for all the actors to come together and determine their individual and unique offerings in order to obtain a cohesive and comprehensive picture of all that Italy can offer to the world.

The forum’s program and presentation states that the event’s mission is to “Photograph the situation, identify its strengths and weaknesses, and propose universally beneficial solutions.”

Being aware of the full picture can help businesses determine where and how to position themselves on the global market and perhaps adjust their offer based on its needs and identify new opportunities. Such a platform would also be a fundamental tool for institutions, which need to be fully aware of Italy’s exports to decide where and how to allocate any eventual support, without risking to waste public funds.

Furthermore, IEF wants to bring focus to the Mezzogiorno, the southern part of Italy, which it believes has great economic potential, not only as a tourist destination. That is partly the reason why the conference is taking place on the iconic Sorrentine Peninsula, south of Naples.

Born from the idea and experience of Italian entrepreneur and founder of The One Company, Lorenzo Zurino, organized in collaboration with Sace Simest and supported by Ispi - the Institute for the study of international politics, - Deloitte, Edelman and Lega del Filo d’Oro as charity partner, the conference will consist of a series of lectures, round tables and workshops on topics including food, fashion and internationalization. Moderating the fashion workshop will be i-Italy founder and editor-in-chief Letizia Airos. 

At the end of the first day there will be a Gala during which the Italian Export Excellence award will be given out. The panel will consist of representatives from Italian and foreign companies and institutions with great experience working in the global market, including the ministry of agricultural policies, Confindustria, Agenzia Dogane, the Inspectorate for agro-alimentary fraud, the Dubai Economic Council, and the Italian Embassy in Qatar.

The Osservatorio Italiano Export (OIE) - that is the Italian export observatory - will be set up as the central and permanent organism that will provide resources and support and institutionally connect businesses with public operators and decision-makers. The idea is that it will be a transparent but concrete and effective structure, operative all year long.

The members of the observatory were chosen in order to provide the best support in the areas of legal/tax consultation, credit and insurance and points of reference with mediating organs, such as the Italian Chamber of Fashion, and with national and local institutions.

So the forum aims to be much more than a conference: these two days are conceived as a starting point, the initial encounter that will lead to the creation of an ecosystem consisting of all the different actors involved in exporting Italy in all its forms.

These actors will maintain contact through the multichannel platform supported by the OIE and meet regularly, year after year, in order to continuously expand their area of influence and adapt to and explore relevant global themes.