EXPO: Africa and Italy connected by a Bergamo-based shipping network

(by Francesca Morandi)

EXPO MILAN – Almost one third of the Milan Expo 2015 is “Africa”, with 43 African countries participating this year at the universal exposition. The figure is much higher than the previous World Expo in Shanghai, in 2010, where there was only one collective “Arica Pavilion”.

The African countries present at the Milan Expo with their own national pavilion are Angola, Nigeria, and Morocco, whereas the others are participating through nine “clusters”, organised on the base of common food and cultural identity.

The strong African presence at the Expo represents the willingness of the southern continent to strengthen trade relationships with Italy, considering as well, that back in 2008, the votes of the African countries were decisive for assigning to Italy the World Expo 2015 (instead of Izmir, Turkey).

Italy, in turn, decided to focus on the theme of “Nourishing the planet, energy for life”, linking it to the United Nations post-2015 development agenda and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), encompassing the battle against world hunger, education and gender equality, issues that many African governments are still facing.

Despite these social problems, the African continent is a great and potential business partner for the Italian peninsula, as the Africa Logistics Network program, launched on May 13 in Bergamo, shows.

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