Venerdì, 19 Ottobre 2018
MILAN

Napolitano, Letta see Milan Expo 2015 as key boost

English
© ANSA

(By Christopher Livesay)
Milan, July 8 - Both the Italian president and
premier are making it clear they believe the 2015 Milan Expo
could help kick-start the recession-hit economy back into the
black.
"This is an extraordinary opportunity for new development
in Italy, across north and south, and to overcome the crisis
we're going through and that's making things difficult for the
economy and society," said President Giorgio Napolitano.
Speaking at the Royal Villa of Monza to mark the launch of
pre-Expo events, Napolitano was joined this weekend by Premier
Enrico Letta, who seconded the head of State's sentiment.
"We're tying the Expo to the goal of relaunching our
country's economy, and this means everyone needs to commit,"
said the premier.
"The Expo will be the heart of the recovery, and it will
succeed as a symbol of national unity.
"For this I guarantee the total commitment of the
government.
"Italy must emerge from under the pall of underestimating
itself and self-deprecation, and the Expo will be the right
occasion".
Expo 2015, which runs May 1 until October 31 that year, is
expected to attract over 20 million visitors and to be a massive
money spinner for Italy's business capital.
Preparations on a 1.1-million-square-meter site have been
underway for years.
Italy last hosted a World's Fair in 1992 with a Christopher
Columbus-themed Expo in Genoa.
Expo 2015 is already close to hitting its target of having
130 countries sign up by the end of the year after the Comoros
Islands became the 129th last month.
Of those, 57 have already signed participation contracts
for the Milan fair.
The theme of the Expo 2015, 'Feeding the Planet - Energy
for Life', centers on fighting famine and malnutrition worldwide
through sustainable and healthy development, global cooperation
and new technology.
Former American vice-president and Nobel Peace Laureate Al
Gore has endorsed the event, calling the theme "very solid" and
designed to have "zero (negative) environmental impact".
A new study Friday suggested Italy was an appropriate
location for the food-based theme.
According to a report by Coldiretti, the Italian farmers
association, Italy leads the world in terms of food purity, with
only 0.3% "of the country's agricultural products over the legal
limit for chemical residue".
The percentage was five times lower than the European
average, and 26 times lower than the non-European average,
according to the study.
Coldiretti used data provided by the European Food Safety
Authority (EFSA) to compose the report for Milan Expo 2015, the
next World's Fair, which is devoted to healthy, sustainable
eating.
"There is an extraordinary Italy that we experience
everyday and the world envies us for: it's the Italy of good
food, a variety of agriculture...biodiversity and
sustainability," said Coldiretti President Sergio Marini.
"This is the Italy we need to show the world at Expo 2015".

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