BROWARD COUNTY, FLA - Broward County and Italy have more in common that you may know. There are twenty two Italian companies in Broward. Fort Lauderdale is known as the â€œVenice of Americaâ€ and the Italian marine industry is the largest in the European Union and represents an excellent prospect for U.S. products. Port Everglades has a sister port in Italy, Fort Lauderdale has two Italian sister cities.
Italyâ€™s Deputy Minister of Economic Development Carlo Calenda, and Italyâ€™s Ambassador to the U.S., Claudio Bisogniero were welcomed to Broward County by Vice Mayor Barbara Sharief, Commissioners Chip LaMarca and Dale Holness and Browardâ€™s Economic and Small Business staff. The Italian representatives were in town to visit the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show.
"We are hoping to strengthen our trade relationships. Italy is already very present in Broward County, " said Ambassador Bisogniero.
Vice Mayor Sharief presented the pair with a ceremonial Key to the County and Commissioner LaMarca read a proclamation designating 2013 as the â€œYear of Italian Culture.â€
"This is part of a broader business trip. South Florida is a strategic gateway for trade," said Deputy Minister Calenda.
In addition to the marine trade, the Italian officials learned about opportunities in Browardâ€™s growing industries such Aviation, Aerospace, Technology and Life Sciences.
Italian companies operating in Broward County include some well-known names such as the Ferretti Group, MSC Cruises, Mapei, Astaldi Construction and others. Italy is 16th largest trading partner for the U.S and the 23rd largest market for U.S. exports with a trade value of $52-billion.