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Political and institutional actors at the FOOD EXPO 2018 opening ceremony

A great number of significant of representatives from political and corporate Greek bodies were present at the opening ceremony of the 5th FOOD EXPO, emphasising the importance of the trade show's role for the entirety of the Food & Beverage sector.

Mr Nikos Choudalakis, CEO of FORUM SA, the trade show organizing company, addressed the opening ceremony by stating that, “FOOD EXPO’s widespread reputation, as well as its unanimous approval from the entirety of the local market, reflect the dynamic of the Greek Food & Beverage production businesses and the enormous export prospects of the Greek Food and Drinks all across the globe”.

The Minister of Agricultural Development & Food, Mr Evangelos Apostolou, who inaugurated the exhibition, took stock of the work of the Greek government and added that “we must support the agri-food sector, since it offers comparative advantages versus its international competition, and to safeguard the Greek agri-food product, especially in such a difficult time for the country”.

Political and institutional actors at the FOOD EXPO opening ceremony

1. Nikos Choudalakis president and CEO of FORUM SA 2. Evangelos Apostolou, Minister of Agricultural Development & Food

The importance of the Food & Beverage industry was stressed by Mr Evangelos Kaloussis, President of the Federation of Hellenic Food Industries (SEVT), who during his address stated that this particular sector accounts for 25 percent of the Greek manufacturing and industrial production, while its turnover amounts to approximately 15 billion euros, of which 4.5 billion relate to exports. “Our goal is to bring Greek products to international markets”, said Mr Kaloussis. “And FOOD EXPO plays has an important role to play”.

Mr Vladimir Tudzharov, Secretary General of the Ministry of Economy of the Republic of Bulgaria was also present and addressed the audience at the ceremony. He talked about his country’s national pavilion at this year’s trade fair and the fact that Bulgaria was FOOD EXPO’s 2018 partner country. “Greece is Bulgaria’s traditional trade and economic partner. Apart from the political, cultural and historical ties, there are excellent commercial relations between the two countries that Bulgaria highly appreciates. Trade turnover between Bulgaria and Greece is about € 3 billion per year on average, with growth in both exports and imports this year”, he declared.

Finally, Mr Konstantinos Agorastos, Governor of the Region of Thessaly & President of the Association of Greek Regions, Mr Konstantinos Michalos, President of the Union of Hellenic Chambers (UHC) & the Athens Chamber of Commerce & Industry (ACCI), and Dr Kyriakos Loufakis, President of the Greek International Business Association (SEVE), also addressed the ceremony.