05:56 GMT +317 November 2019
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    EXCLUSIVE: 'Made-in-Italy' Economy a Match for Russia Amid Europe's Meltdown

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    The economies of Italy and Russia complement each other, offering desirable advantages amid the economic crisis in Europe, Rosario Alessandrello, President of the Italian-Russian Chamber of Commerce, told Sputnik.

    In an exclusive interview with Sputnik, Rosario Alessandrello, President of the Italian-Russian Chamber of Commerce, specifically heaped praise on bilateral economic cooperation in light of the economic crisis in Europe.

    The interview came ahead of the conference "Small and medium business in Russia and Italy: cooperation mechanisms," which is due to kick off in Bologna on September 23.

    "The models of the economies of Italy and Russia complement each other. Russia is rich in minerals, but it does not have sufficient manufacturing enterprises to transform them into the final product," Alessandrello said.

    According to him, one of Russian's fundamental problems is that it lacks a network of modern manufacturing enterprises related to small- and medium-sized businesses.

    "And now the most important thing is to restart the production of a final product in Russia…by means of developing small- and medium-sized businesses which specifically deal with introducing modern technologies," Alessandrello pointed out.

    He said that "Russians have always been great in research and the invention of new technologies, but when they start resolving the task of organizing industrial production, they face a lack of necessary experience and entrepreneurial culture."

    "In Europe, Italy is widely known for its well-developed network of small- and medium-sized businesses, which is why its experience is of paramount importance to Russia. It's necessary to combine the experience of Italian entrepreneurs with Russia's advantages, including natural resources, low labor cost and production, which are competitive because of the ruble exchange rate and the huge sales market," Alessandrello said.

    He added that "it's possible to create a very profitable bilateral partnership thanks to high-quality Italian technology."

    As for Italy’s small and medium-sized enterprises, there are very much interested in developing such cooperation due to the economic crisis in Europe, according to him.

    "To promote the made-in-Italy principle in Russia,  the Italian-Russian Chamber of Commerce have been selecting Russian regions for three years in terms of their attractiveness for Italian business," he said, referring to infrastructure, natural resources, industrial base and government support.

    "For Italy such cooperation has one more advantage related to the fact that our business almost does not depend on policy, something which is not the case with France or Germany," Alessandrello said, citing the botched contract on the supply of France's Mistral assault ships to Russia.

    In August 2015, Paris and Moscow formally terminated the 1.2-billion-euro ($1.35 billion at the current exchange rate) deal on the construction and delivery of two Mistral-class helicopter carriers as France had refused to transfer them to Russia over its alleged role in the Ukrainian conflict.

    Shortly afterwards, French President Francois Hollande confirmed that a deal had been reached with Egypt on the delivery of the two Mistrals to the Arab country.


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