Patama Singhara Na Ayudhaya, Director of the Thai Trade Centre in Rome, has revealed that a marked downturn of the Italian economy should provide an opportunity for Thai canned food exports to penetrate the market with their affordable prices.

The EU member currently has an accumulated debt of 1,946,000 euros as of January 2012, making it one of the countries with huge public debts in the world. Italy ’s public debts account for 120 percent of its GDP. A number of Italian producers, approximately 3,000 companies, are in the process of filing for bankruptcy. Since 2009, over 17,000 Italian companies have shut down. This has led to lower purchasing power of Italian people.

Lower spending capability in Italy has led to a 27 percent decrease in Thai exports to that country. Thailand exports goods worth more than 500 million USD to Italy annually.

Despite the general drop, Thai food exports to Italy are on a rising trend. They include canned seafood, and fresh, chilled, and frozen fish, squid, and shrimp. The economic recession has forced many Italians to become more frugal, and they are turning more towards canned food consumption.-VNA