Italy’s furniture exports to Qatar saw “23.14%” year-on-year growth to reach “€222.8mn” in 2022, according to data from the Italian Trade Agency (ITA) Doha Office.
World-class furniture bearing the ‘Made in Italy’ brand “is increasingly appreciated in Qatar,” Italian Trade Commissioner Paola Lisi told Gulf Times on the sidelines of Italian ambassador Paolo Toschi’s visit to B&B Italia’s showroom Tuesday at the Doha Design District in Msheireb.
Toschi said Tuesday’s tour of the showroom was part of a series of visits that are being conducted by the embassy in different establishments across Qatar’s new-design district at Msheireb.
Lisi reiterated that the increase in exports of the Italian furniture sector to Qatar was “very impressive.” She said: “The main relevant categories of the design industry include furniture and furnishing accessories, in particular, lighting products and ceramic products.”
Citing the latest figures by the Italian National Institute of Statistics (ISTAT) for 2022, Lisi said trade volume between Qatar and Italy exceeded “€7bn” and registered a growth of “54.4%.”
Lisi said: “The top Italian export industries are represented by the military and defence sectors, machinery and equipment, fashion accessories and footwear, furniture (lighting signs, prefabricated buildings, and healthcare furniture), agri-food, and plastics.”
Toschi also said: “Italy had witnessed a record increase in bilateral trade with Qatar and the numbers in the first three months of 2023 are already impressive. We’ve witnessed a huge increase in bilateral trade on yearly basis. The previous year was, of course, affected by the pandemic, but it is still a record year for Italy and we’re looking at a further increase in the numbers going forward.”
According to Lisi, the ITA Doha Office and ‘Salone del Mobile.Milano’ have invited several companies from Qatar to join the 61st edition of ‘Salone del Mobile 2023’, a leading international design and furnishing event slated in Milan from April 18-23.
She said companies from Qatar visiting the exhibition include Sketch Plus Interior and Design Consultancy, Deco Lusso Interior Design, Dal Architects & Designers, Fosc Studio, JMT Design & Build, and Studio Twelve Interiors.
“Salone del Mobile 2023 will again be an unmissable occasion; an opportunity for the entire sector to come together, discuss their particular projects, swap and share ideas and, not least, it will be a chance for the local companies to catch up again with our international community and take stock of the current state of the design industry, along with all of its key players,” Lisi stressed.
Speaking about his visit to B&B Italia’s showroom, Toschi said: “We love the idea of a design district, which we believe already complements very well a successful urban space, which is Msheireb; the embassy has had the pleasure of witnessing it blossoming over time.
“To have an area that focuses on design, in addition to what is already visible in the buildings and the urban concept of this neighbourhood, is a terrific idea. So, I’d like to commend, in particular, Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser as the person who brought this idea forward.”
Italian ambassador Paolo Toschi and Italian Trade Commissioner Paola Lisi during a visit to B&B Italia’s showroom Tuesday at the Doha Design District in Msheireb. PICTURE: Thajudheen