Did you know that UAE is a haven for Italian agro-food products? The UAE is the biggest market for Italian exports in the Gulf and the Middle East and North Africa (Mena) regions, said Gianpaolo Bruno Italian Trade Commissioner to the UAE, Oman and Pakistan.
Yes, Italy and UAE have enjoyed significant food trade relations over the years and this is proved also by the continuous participation in major food exhibitions, such as the Gulf Food Exhibition in Dubai, throughout the region.
The positive consumer trends in UAE and an accelerated flow of migrants from Italy, a significant number in Dubai and the rest in Abu Dhabi, which has strengthened the image of Italy in the United Arab Emirates have created opportunities for Italian food & beverage sector companies as well as for product launches of the most important items from Italian manufacturers through food importers, distributors and retailers available in the emirates.
Therefore, top Italian companies more and more are on a mission to explore new export prospects. In recent time, there’s been a focus on dried pasta, wine and on olive oil, which are major Italian exporting sectors.
The ‘BuonaItalia Trade Show 2017,’ hosted in Dubai last November, for example, was an occasion for 60 Italian companies in the food sector to perform culinary demonstrations with aim to present their products to local suppliers, both distributors and restaurateurs. This event organized by the Italian Chamber of Commerce in the UAE led to talks of setting up permanent Italian cuisine running restaurants that will be widespread throughout Dubai, with a potential to increase the exports of iconic Italian food products to the UAE where consumers are highly sophisticated and appreciate the true quality of an all-Italian enterprise.
Forthcoming event: Gulfood 2018, February 18 to 22. Italy will showcase its authentic range of products and expertise at the annual Gulfood 2018 which provides a platform for those interested in networking and business opportunities.
Forthcoming Project: “The Dh5.5 billion Dubai Food Park will serve as a one-stop hub for the food sector,” reports Gulf News Economy. What is to become Emirate’s new industrial zone clearly will provide opportunities to attract growing investment from global food groups and might present an opportunity for more Italian companies to enter the UAE market.
Italian agro-food products (wine, pasta, oil), for example, are sure to benefit from the UAE market to expand the ‘Made in Italy’ brand in other GCC countries. Italian Trade Agency forecasts a continuous growth in the next few years for any business involved in exporting Italian-made products’ quality and uniqueness.
As the United Arab Emirates imports about 90% of food products, the region represents a very interesting country for the Italian companies in the sector; it is estimated that food export in 2021 will increase by 27%, according to iloveitalianfood.org.
Italian Food Products (Pasta and Wine) on the UAE Market wouldn’t be possible without “the Italian Trade Agency that has designed a multi-pronged strategy to help Italian companies approach the UAE market,” noted Farhana Chowdhury of Khaleej Times. Those who want to become a brand name and importer from Italy, must make sure to become familiar early with UAE Importation Procedures: for any food product that is to enter the UAE, one must have an Importer’s License to trade; all imported products will need to be cleared through customs in the UAE upon arrival.
What’s more, foodstuff will require approval by the Food Control Section of the Public Health Department of the Dubai Municipality for the importation of these products where food labels will be visually inspected and checked against the municipality’s list of approved and registered products to permit the shipment of the food type, brand and country of origin or it will be rejected. The Export Certificate must accompany the product shipment at the time of entry to meet documentation requirements of the Customs Authority.