04:53 GMT27 October 2020
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    Italian companies are doing business in Russia’s southern region of Crimea despite EU’s economic sanctions, a lawmaker from parliament in Italy’s Veneto region said Friday.

    SIMFEROPOL (Sputnik) — A delegation of Italian lawmakers and entrepreneurs is in Crimea to get first-hand experience of the region and existing business opportunities.

    "The business leaders and entrepreneurs who have arrived with our delegation do not always go public with this, but a good number of them are already operating in Crimea," Stefano Valdegamberi told reporters.

    Valdegamberi said Italian companies with a foothold in Russia were particularly interested in supplying Crimean wineries with wine-making equipment. There are also plans to produce goods in Crimea, he added.

    "Italian businesses who are working in the Russian market are particularly interested in Crimea and have begun to invest in the region… they don't just want to sell some stuff in Crimea but produce goods here," he said.

    Earlier today, the speaker of the Crimean parliament and the president of Veneto Regional Council signed a joint declaration on trade, industrial and tech cooperation in a bid to strengthen their ties and promote investment.

    Crimea seceded from Ukraine and reunified with Russia after more than 96 percent of local voters supported the move in a March 2014 referendum. The European Union did not recognize the vote and imposed sanctions on the region and Russia as a whole.


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