Pitti Uomo: Let’s get this party started!
The sumptuous “Salone dei Cinquecento” in the Palazzo Vecchio, which houses Florence’s town hall, was packed for Pitti Uomo’s opening ceremony and side event "Florence, the fashion capital”, and hosted, among other important guests, the Italian Prime Minister (and former mayor of the Tuscan capital) Matteo Renzi.
Suffice to say that the Pitti Uomo 86, which runs from June 17 to 20, promises to be unprecedented, marking the revival of the Italian fashion industry. As Renzi stressed, “We are celebrating 60 years of Italian fashion. But the most beautiful pages are yet to be written. Beyond our borders, there is an enormous appetite for Italy and the Italian way of life, which we often tend to undervalue. Fashion ought to become a central part of our economy. "
The Italian government has invested two million euros in the menswear trade show and is ready to step up its efforts next year, having announced an even more ambitious investment plan. "It will be the largest project ever undertaken to promote Made in Italy," declared Carlo Calenda, deputy minister of economic development.
“It’s a complex, yet cogent plan involving the same kind of investment allocated to Pitti Uomo, which has served as a test case for us, and which will continue to receive the same level of support. This year’s event should not be something out of the ordinary, but rather ordinary. And what we’ve done for Pitti, we'll do it for 15 other major events, from Milano Unica to VincenzaOro. International demand is strong. We just need to invest in culture and industry, two of Italy’s key areas of focus," said the deputy minister.
"Fashion is not just glamor and fashion shows, but also an industry," added Claudio Marenzi, president of SMI, which unites Italian textile and clothing companies, affirming for his part his belief in the recovery of the sector in Italy. "For the first time in six years, we saw positive numbers at the beginning of this year. During the first half, growth was at 2.3% (1.7% for textiles, 2.8% for clothing), while forecasts for the rest of the year put growth in the sector at 3.6% (+3.1% for textiles, +4.2% for clothing), which should allow us to exceed our 2014 turnover of 52 billion euros with a 10 billion euro surplus in our trade balance," said Claudio Marenzi.
"Our exports have been growing over the past four years at a faster rate than in France or in Germany, thanks to textile and fashion companies. We’re the only Western country to successfully maintain our manufacturing industry. Italy is not only synonymous with creativity, we also control the entire production chain," deputy minister Carlo Calenda noted, reflecting the government’s interest in a sector hitherto more or less abandoned.
"What we propose is not only fashion, but the Italian lifestyle. That’s what consumers around the world are looking for more and more. For this year’s Pitti Uomo, we are not only going to present products, but also culture, history - things that special and extraordinary," concluded Gaetano Marzotto, president of Pitti Immagine.
Italy seems to have finally realized the patrimony it possesses, not having considered its real value up until now.
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