Deputy Minister Archi visited Singapore on 23 and 24 July for an intense programme of meetings. Highlights were the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on cooperation by small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and the announcement of a mission by representatives of Italy’s infrastructure sector in November 2013.
Support for the economy through the diplomacy for growth channel, which aims to support Italy’s “Country System” in its internationalisation effort, was a focus of the visit.
Memorandum of Understanding for SMEs
Archi was accompanied by a delegation representing Italian infrastructure and banking sector companies and a representative of the local Italian Trade Agency office, for a meeting with the Minister for Trade and Industry, Lim, and the MoU signing ceremony. The Memorandum is designed to increase trade and bilateral investment flows and to encourage partnerships by Italian and Singaporean SMEs to take advantage of a Southeast Asian market that has 600 million people and growth rates averaging 6%.
Singapore is a “key partner”
“Italy looks to Singapore as a key partner in Southeast Asia”, declared the Deputy Minister. “This MoU is an important opportunity for our two countries to deepen their economic cooperation links. It is my firm belief that complementary relationships between our SMEs can build a long-term partnership both in Europe and in Asia”.
Archi also met his counterpart Grace Fu; the Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs and Culture, Tan; and the Chair of the Temasek Investment Fund, the world’s seventh in order of importance.
Trade mission focusing on infrastructure
The Singaporean authorities were delighted to hear of the infrastructure mission taking place in November, which will be included in the long-term investment programme (an estimated 200 billion euros from now until 2030) introduced by the City-State. The programme is intended to renew and expand the infrastructure network: port, airport, metropolitan transport network and railway links with Malaysia.