The most important exhibition event in Greece, and one of the most important events in Southeastern Europe, the 83rd Thessaloniki International Fair (TIF), will be held from 8 to 16 September 2018. The USA is the honoured country, while TIF will focus on digital economy and innovation (with the participation of companies on the cutting edge of new technology worldwide, including Facebook, Microsoft, Google and Cisco), giving Greek start uppers the opportunity to make important contacts, AMNA reported. (For details on the American delegation and scheduled events: https://usatif2018.gr).
According to AMNA, in a press conference ahead of the opening, CEO of the organizer TIF-Helexpo, Kyriakos Pozrikidis said that twenty countries will send state delegations, in addition to over 1,500 companies represented at the annual event. This year’s state delegations will include for the first time Portugal, Uzbekistan and Bangladesh. China, honored country for 2017, will participate with 30 companies, and India, honored country for 2019, will attend with 35 companies.
The Ministry of Digital Policy, Telecommunications and Media announced in a press release that it will set up a thematic park called “Digital Greece” in the framework of the 83rd Thessaloniki International Fair. The park, next to the US pavilion, will host more than 100 start-ups.
According to the press release, Minister of Digital Policy, Telecommunications and Media, Nikos Pappas, underlined that “we consider it our obligation to support Greek startup companies and their participation at the Thessaloniki International Fair (TIF), in order to promote the Greek startup ecosystem.
Startup businesses and new technologies could and should develop into the new heavy industry of our country” the Minister said. “The 2018 ITF is taking place at a very encouraging moment for the Greek economy, just a few days following the conclusion of the third and last (bailout) program, as well as a very good moment for the role of Greece in the post crisis era”, he added.
Greek entrepreneurs will be able to present their innovative ideas – at no cost (their participation is funded by the Ministry of Digital Policy, Telecommunications and Media) – and their fresh outlook on the way we have learned to work, their products and their achievements, framed by a rich program of talks and workshops on new technologies, creative industry, cyber security and digital skills. Within the framework of the parallel events program, discussions and an exchange of views will be held with distinguished entrepreneurs, academics and representatives of ecosystem support bodies, with priority given to identifying sources of finance and contact with investors.
TIF-Helexpo CEO Kyriakos Pozrikidis, President of TIF-Helexpo Tasos Tzikas, US Ambassador Geoffrey R. Pyatt & President of American-Hellenic Chamber of Commerce Simos Anastasopoulos
On his part, the U.S. Ambassador to Greece Geoffrey R. Pyatt in an interview with Vassilis Nedos of Athens daily “Kathimerini” noted that he is very excited about the TIF that comes “in the context of a very important year for Greece, and Northern Greece in particular: the end of the bailout, the economic opportunities that it represents; the implementation of the Prespes agreement with all that it means for the economic relationship between Greece and all of your northern neighbors and the role that Greece plays in terms of encouraging thecontinued progress of the countries of the Western Balkans towards the Euro-Atlantic community; the year of progress on some of the key energy projects like the FSRU in Alexandroupoli, the IGB — and I think we’re enthusiastic about the regional dimension that we’ve inserted into the TIF this year with AmCham’s Energy Conference which involvesparticipation not just from Greek and American companies, but also other regional governments”.
Ambassador Pyatt, also mentioned that the U.S. Ambassador to Nicosia is going to be part of the U.S. team at TIF. “So it really highlights the role that we have tried to emphasize of Greece as a regional pillar and the investment that the United States is making in our relationship with Greece and with all the people of Greece at a moment when geopolitics is returning to the Eastern Mediterranean, the Balkan, and wider Black Sea region in a big way”.
Regarding American investments in Greece, Ambassador Pyatt emphasized the “very strong U.S. corporate participation”, adding that “our Pavilion is fantastic. We have more than 50 American companies participating. Many are bringing their senior leadership from the United States or from their European headquarters. I think what that reflects is the fact that American companies are looking with fresh eyes at the opportunity that Greece represents, both in terms of this market, 11 million people; but also the role that Thessaloniki and Greece can play as a platform for the wider region”.
A complete catalogue of the participations and events in pdf form