Twenty countries will send state delegations to the Thessaloniki International Fair (TIF) in addition to the 1,500 and more companies represented at the annual event, CEO of the organizer TIF-Helexpo Kyriakos Pozrikidis said in Thessaloniki on Tuesday.
At a press conference ahead of the opening on Saturday, organizers said they were expecting more visitors than last year (264,000). The fair will run from September 8 to 16, and is the venue for an annual economic policy speech by the prime minister.
The United States, this year’s honored country, will be represented by a business delegation headed by US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross. A total of 60 American companies will participate, including Facebook, Google, Intel, HP, Oracle, Microsoft, Lockheed Martin and Cisco. (For details on the American delegation and scheduled events: https://usatif2018.gr).
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.
Greek companies will include 130 startups (Digital Greece, Pavilion 12) and representatives from 48 Greek chambers of commerce.
Speakers at the press conference in Thessaloniki included newly-appointed US consul in Thessaloniki Gregory W. Pfleger, who said the Sixth Fleet’s flagship would dock in the city’s port throughout the fair; the Macedonia-Thrace minister; the regional director, and the Hellenic-American Chamber of Commerce president, among others.
In addition, Papastratos CEO Christos Charpantidis said at the event that the TIF would be smoke-free. The historic Greek tobacco company has stopped producing cigarettes and will be investing in new innovative products.