Tue, 05 December 2023
A business forum entitled ‘Prospects of Cooperation for Sustainable Development between Italy and Bahrain: Introduction of the Italy-Bahrain Business Council’s Activities’ was recently held under the patronage of Minister of Industry and Commerce, HE Abdulla bin Adel Fakhro.
The conference was hosted in collaboration with the Italy-Bahrain Business Council (IBBC), the Embassy of Italy in Bahrain, the Embassy of Bahrain in Italy, the Italian Trade Agency (ITA), and the Bahrain Economic Development Board (Bahrain EDB).
The forum featured presentations with a focus on high-impact trade and economic bilateral opportunities between Italy and Bahrain, as well as potential areas of cooperation in the field of sustainable development.
Bahrain and Italy share a robust history of economic and trade ties since several agreements, across a range of sectors, have been signed that include the protection of investments and the mutual exemption of taxes on sea transport. Bilateral trade, in 2020, amounted to USD634 million, while two years later in 2022 the total volume almost doubled, reaching USD954.8 million. Furthermore, over the past three years, the ITA’s Desk in Manama has assisted over 250 Italian companies and made it possible for over 100 Bahraini delegates to attend exhibitions and fairs in Italy.
In the Bahraini import landscape, Italy ranks first for mechanical components, appreciated for its high-level technology and fashion — which imports have shown an increase of about 49 percent between 2021 and 2022 — and food imports doubled between 2020 and 2022, reaching an overall amount of about USD40 million. The main products exported from Italy have been industrial machinery, semi-finished products, furniture, and vehicles. From the Bahraini side, aluminium and chemicals have been the most exported categories to Italy. The Bahraini exports to Italy have increased overall by about 141,6 percent on a yearly basis.
Approximately 130 Italian individuals play significant roles within the corporate landscape of Bahrain, either as members of the board of directors or as enterprise owners with the largest concentration of firms in the manufacturing sector.