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    [caption id="attachment_786" align="alignleft" width="150" caption="Italian Hamburgers for the Russian Market "]Italian Hamburgers for the Russian Market [/caption] THE INSTALLATION WILL SERVE THE MCDONALD’S RESTAURANTS IN THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION - Inalca JBS (Cremonini Group and JBS) have inaugurated a new factory with the brand ‘MARR Russia’ in Moscow. At the beginning of last February, Inalca JBS (a company resulting from the alliance between Cremonini S.p.A. of Italy and the Brazilian group JBS S.A., the largest producer of beef meat in the world) inaugurated a new production and distribution complex with the brand ‘MARR Russia’ in Moscow. Luca Zaia, Minister for Agriculture, Food and Forestry, Elena Borisovna Skrynnik, the Russian Minister for Agriculture, and other important local and international dignitaries attended the inauguration. The new industrial complex includes one of the largest and most modern distribution logistics platforms in Russia for the sale and distribution of food products, and a factory for the production of hamburgers, fitted with the most advanced technologies. The completely automated installation has a production capacity of 80,000 hamburgers per hour and will mainly serve the McDonald’s restaurants in the Russian Federation. The new complex was designed and co-ordinated by Tecnostardue, an Inalca JBS company, and has been built at Odinzovo in a strategic position next to the Moscow ring road. The new complex is on an area of 25,000 square metres, and is developed on three floors with an overall covered surface area of 26,000 square metres. It will employ about 400 people and has required an investment of Euro 100 million, fully self-financed. The factory is the result of Inalca being in Russia for more than 20 years. In this market, the company has generated revenues of Euro 140 million, through the subsidiary ‘MARR Russia,’ in 2009. The company expects to reach a turnover of about Euro 180 million in 2010 with the full implementation of the new factory. “The start of work in this new industrial complex is a reason for particular satisfaction for me as it rewards those, like me, who have always believed and invested in this country, and who have always understood and respected the high standards and strict production rules,” commented Luigi Cremonini, founder of Inalca and president of the Cremonini group. “The Cremonini group will now be a leader on two fronts in Russia - on one hand laying the bases to complete the production supply chain of the bovine sector through this new factory, and the start of another investment for the construction of a butchery installation in the Orenburg region. On the other, we will be able to distribute and enhance Italian food and product excellence, constantly growing in the Russian food industry, through the use of the new distribution platform in Moscow and the existing one in St Petersburg.”

    by Camilla Sala
    THE 2ND MEDITERRANEAN FORUM, ROME, FEBRUARY 25-26, 2010 - The Mediterranean countries can offer significant development opportunities for Italian SMEs. It’s up to Italy, historically and geographically at the center of the area, to relaunch its role of leadership. [caption id="attachment_639" align="alignleft" width="150" caption="The Mediterranean Must Stay ‘Mare Nostrum’ "]The Mediterranean Must Stay ‘Mare Nostrum’ [/caption] The 2nd Mediterranean Economic Forum, organized by ICE, Confindustria and the Italian Banking Association (ABI), in collaboration with Rome City Council, and UIR, under the aegis of the Ministry of Economic Development with the support of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, was held in Rome on February 25 and 26. It was attended by about 600 companies, over 200 coming from 13 countries - Algeria, Cyprus, Egypt, Jordan, Israel, Lebanon, Libya, Malta, Morocco, the Palestinian Territories, Syria, Tunisia and Turkey - for a total of 1,300 business meetings. Its aim was to relaunch the ‘bridging’ role Italy is called on to play in traffic and economic relations between North Europe and the Mediterranean Basin. At the time of Caesar, who established the concept of Mare Nostrum for the first time to indicate the predominant role played by Italy in this geopolitical area. Over the centuries, this expression has lost its original ‘imperialist’ connotations and is now a reference to the real growth potential in the markets. Mediterranean countries, with 280,000,000 inhabitants, a great quantity of energy available and strongly expanding economies, offer Italian companies significant opportunities for development. Just think, for example, of the allocations arranged by Egypt for the construction of wind farms and water treatment installations (about US $100 billion) for 2009-2010 or the modernization and extension of port infrastructure like East Port Said, where 40% of the goods entering Egypt transit. Similar work will be carried out in Algeria, Tunisia and Morocco, which boasts the main terminal in the Mediterranean, the Tanger Med. In addition, many governments are adopting a series of reforms to promote the liberalization of trade, simplify bureaucratic procedures and stabilize the tax regime. Up to now, who has bet on this ‘sea of opportunity’? Once again, the ‘Asian tigers’ are in the front line. The emerging economies have multiplied their presence in the area in recent years and now represent about 20% of the overall investment. Europe is still the leading investor, with a share of 40%, also because of the cooperation programs linking it to these countries. Italy can carve out the role of leader for itself in the development of the Mediterranean by leveraging on European projects, in particular the medium-sized ones easily accessible to small and medium-sized companies. To date, 92% of the investment has been made by multi-nationals which, following the economic crisis, have had to reduce their work. A great deal has been done by the Italian system to promote relationships between Italy and countries on the southern bank - and the Mediterranean Forum is certainly an example - but the game is still open and the stakes are high; as some experts stress, the risk is to find oneself noting that what was once ‘our sea’ is now that of the others.

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