Undersecretary Manlio Di Stefano opened today by videoconference the annual members’ meeting of Origin Italia, the Association of Consortia for Geographical Indications. As Di Stefano pointed out, Italy has for years been first in terms of the number of products with geographical indications recognised by the European Union: over 800 wines and food products.
“Unfortunately, Italian products with a geographical indication do not escape the consequences of the crisis triggered by the Coronavirus; they suffer from the dissemination of erroneous information or perceptions regarding food safety”. – said the Undersecretary. “Since the early stages of the Coronavirus health emergency, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation has worked to protect Italian products on foreign markets. He has reacted decisively to the request that operators addressed to Italian producers to issue certifications showing that their products were “Coronavirus free”.
Also, to support the various sectors of the Italian economy affected by the crisis, measures have been taken in the “Rilancio (Relaunch)” Decree in favour of internationalisation. The Integrated Promotion Fund, which serves to finance the promotion of the Italian System abroad through our Embassies, Consulates, Italian Cultural Institutes, and Italian Trade Agency Offices, was increased from 150 to 400 million euros. The Simest Revolving Fund, which helps companies to expand abroad by financing their capitalisation, participation in trade fairs and exhibitions, feasibility studies, programs to enter non-EU markets and technical assistance, was refinanced with a further 200 million euros.
“We continue to work very intensively with all relevant Ministries and national bodies as well as international organisations working in the sector. I trust in your contribution to support the commitment of Ministry of Foreign Affairs to encourage the international network to put in common the different components of our country and make the activities converging towards common objectives”, concluded Di Stefano.