Italian trade show Samoter will be going ahead in May, despite rumours that it might not take place because of an Italian market left weak as a result of the global financial crisis.

The show, held in Verona, is on a three-year cycle, and this year is teaming up with the Asphatica infrastructure and road safety exhibition.

Organiser Veronafiere called a meeting with the relevant trade associations for this week to “define together, given the continuing and heavy crisis still affecting the sector, the overall proposal and distinctive profile of the 29th edition of Samoter and Asphaltica”.

Veronafiere said the meeting had been called to define the last details of the event, but also to reiterate that the sector was “vital to the national economy and the future of the country”.

After the meeting, the organisers said that no one was hiding the difficulties facing the industry – not only in Italy – “but no one is willing to throw in the towel”.

Director general of Veronafiere Giovanni Mantovani said the country was at a crossroads, and that it must decide if it still wanted an industry, or if it would finally let it go.

He said that Veronafiere believed in the show, with its strong 50-year history, and that the producers' associations were with it.

He added that North Africa, the Mediterranean region, Eastern and Northern Europe, as well as Italy, were the key areas for the show, but a great deal of attention also needed to be paid to product innovation and conferences.

The meeting also felt that Samoter represented an opportunity for the sector and the government to identify areas for investment and development plans to jump-start the sector.

Samoter is scheduled to take place this year from 8 to 11 May. The last time Samoter was held, in 2011, it attracted 98,000 visitors from 110 countries. There were 900 exhibitors at the show, taking 109,000m2 of space.

According to Italian trade association UNACEA, the Italian construction equipment market fell 18% last year to 6,192 machines – the sixth consecutive year of declining sales, from a pre-crisis high of more than 30,000 machines per year.

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