MS & Africa Middle East: The New Veronafiere Marble, Technology, Design and Construction Machinery Exhibition

Marmomacc and Samoter join forces for an unprecedented event in Cairo. The two Veronafiere exhibitions take excellence in the building, materials, know-how, technology and machinery field to North Africa’s emerging markets.
Veronafiere takes another step in its internationalisation programme for the construction industry. Cairo in Egypt will see the debut 9-12 December 2013 of MS Africa & Middle East, The International Trade Fair for Stone Design, Technology, Earthmoving and Building Machinery, a new and unprecedented event dedicated to marble, technologies, design and construction machinery.
MS is named after Marmomacc ( and Samoter (, the two leading international exhibitions in their respective sectors (marble and natural stone, construction machinery), while Africa & Middle East focus attention on the building markets of North Africa and the Middle East. The initiative set in motion by Veronafiere in collaboration with its Egyptian partner Art Line was presented during the 47th edition of Marmomacc in Verona last 26-29 September.
The launch event was attended by the entire Egyptian field representing industry and sector institutions together with the CEO & Director General of Veronafiere, Giovanni Mantovani, Ambassador Amr Abbas, Egypt’s Consul General in Milan, Ali Abdel Kader, the Head of Trade Fairs Committee-Egyptian Export Council, Yasser Rashed, the representative of the mining sector of the Federation of Egyptian Industries, Ahmed Abdel Hamid, the representative of the Marble Sector of the Egyptian Federation of Industries, Khaled El Miquaty, the member of the Italian-Egyptian Business Council, Ahmed Allam, President of Artline, and Amr Abdel Latif, Executive Director of Expolink.
The economies of Egypt and other North African countries are considered to be strategic for the development of internatoinal activities by Samoter and Marmomacc.
Egypt enjoys a preferential geographical position that naturally candidates the country’s role as regional hub, thanks also to commercial agreements (Comesa, Gafta) with most countries in the continent which, among other things, have enabled significant cuts in customs duties. Moreover, Egypt does not currently host such a specialist international exhibition in two such closely related sectors. The categories in the stone field will range from marble and natural stones through to processing technology and design, while as regards machinery will include all systems used in quarries and on construction sites (earthmoving, hoisting/lifting, attachment) and aggregate processing (concrete, asphalt and crushing).
The Egyptian stone industry is developing, as proven by figures released by the Marmomacc Observatory based on Istat data: Italian exports of marble, granite and natural stones in the Mediterranean area (Turkey, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, Israel and Libya) grew in the first half of 2012 by 7.2% from 29.5 to 27.5 million euros. On the other hand, marble processing equipment and technologies in the first six months saw Italian exports to Africa improve from 37 to 62.5 million euros (+68.6%). The Italian earth moving machinery market is also consolidating its positions, with global exports up in the first half from 424.1 to 519.2 million euros (+20%). With reference to Egypt alone, exports of processed, cut and finished materials has increased by 71.7%, from 845,205 euros to 1,450,815 euros.
Exports of construction machinery, on the other hand, in the first half of 2012 compared to the same period in 2011 grew by 38.6% to 10,662,602 euros (against 7,694,695).
In more detail, and again with respect to the first half of 2012, drilling machinery exports grew by 15% to 3,732,606 euros, while crushing and screening machinery posted an impressive +248% to 728,974 euros. Exports also grew for road-building machines by +18% for a total of 1,632,075 euros and earth-moving machinery by +93.9% to 3,970,163 euros. The only sector to post a downturn concerned concrete machinery, with export dropping by 21.9% to 578,397 euros. Inasmuch, the market is very lively – although it must be recalled that it saw a sharp fall in 2011 following the political unrest seen throughout North Africa.
Egypt consequently offers a great many business opportunities for companies turning to Marmomacc and Samoter, which can rely on a solid and ancient tradition of mining, quarrying and processing natural stone as well as growing demand linked to major infrastructural development projects and the lack of local production, especially as regards construction machinery.
“Thanks to this operation,” the CEO & Director General of VeronaFiere, Giovanni Mantovani, pointed out, “Veronafiere is taking the expertise of two leading exhibitions in their respective industries to a key country among emerging markets in the Mediterranean area. This continues Veronafiere’s internationalisation process involving 10% of our investments; the Marmomacc brand is already active with its World Tour embracing the United States, Saudi Arabia and Qatar.”
Ambassador Amr Abbas, Egypt’s Consul General in Milan, said: “This agreement with Veronafiere marks an important step in the progress of cooperation between the two countries. Egypt has intensified its efforts to develop a new economy and is focusing on the role of the private sector for internal growth, not to mention that more than 800 Italian companies already operating in the country, with overall trade standing at over 4 billion euros.”
These considerations are fully shared by Michele Vitulano, director of UNACEA with responsibility for internationalisation: “A country of 80 million people, such as Egypt, and the surrounding Africa-Middle East area are regions having huge potential for growth. Natural resources and the need for new infrastructures adapted to development prospects should encourage Italian manufacturers of construction machinery and equipment to think in a medium-to-long term, without being adversely influenced by the news of events related to social movements across the country. The offer of collaboration by Italian industry in the sector to local businesses and the commitment of UNACEA as regards the success of MS Africa Middle East seek to be a major signal of optimism and determination for the development of these important areas in the world.”
From a more technical point of view, the first edition of MS Africa & Middle East is scheduled in Cairo 9-12 December 2013 at the Cairo International Convention and Exhibition Centre (CICC) while awaiting the completion of the new Cairo Expo City designed by architect Zaha Hadid in collaboration with Buro Happold. The exhibition will occupy an area of about 5000 square meters and will be open free of charge to professional operators. The costs for exhibitors are very competitive and will range for inside locations from 170 euro/sq.m. for bare area to 195 euro/sq.m. for areas with basic set-ups.
Activities will be followed up by Veronafiere’s international organisation and in any case the event can also count on the major commitment for promoting the Samoter and Marmomacc brands nationally and internationally (Marmomacc already boasts 60% of foreign exhibitors, while the last edition of Samoter achieved 30%) as well as the know-how of Egyptian partner Art Line. The exhibition’s main professional visitors are expected to come not only from Egypt but also from countries in North Africa and the Middle East: in this context, Cairo is an authentic gateway to these markets and much easier to reach than Verona not the least in terms of language, visa procedures and distances.
The scheduling of the exhibition in December 2013 – given the intense international calendar – also helps make the best use of outside areas and all the other aspects that the exhibition centre and the city have to offer in terms of accommodation, tourism and hospitality.
Source: Samoter News Room