At Lucca on the 4th and 5th of October was held the XIV edition of LuBec – Lucca Beni Culturali, the annual international forum dedicated to the development of the industry on cultural heritage – technology – tourism. The Italian Chamber of Commerce in Bulgaria, in the context of promotional activities on tourism and culture between Italy and Bulgaria and according to the continuity of the actions supporting the economic and commercial relations between the two cities of Plovdiv and Matera, both European Capitals of culture for 2019, was invited to take part to the forum in the person of the President Marco Montecchi, together with a delegation of the Municipality of Plovdiv composed by the Mayor Ivan Totev, the city councilman for culture and tourism Alexander Darzhikov, the Director of the Foundation Plovdiv 2019 Kiril Velchev and the responsible for International Cooperation Valeria Toncheva.
On the occasion of the European Year of Cultural Heritage, the aims of the two working days were the promotion of the role of the cultural heritage as an fundamental component of cultural diversity and of intercultural dialogue, the strengthening of the contribution of cultural heritage to society, economy and the promotion of the very cultural heritage as a essential mean in the relations between the European Union and Third Countries.
Several governmental Italian institutions took part to the event, representatives of the world of academia, exponents of Associations of category, representatives of the diplomatic world, to bring their own experiences as a precious addition to the discussions on the panels.
The official opening of the event was chaired by the President of Promo P.A. Foundation, Gaetano Scognamiglio, who in his speech underlined that “This XIV Edition of LuBeC fits into the contest of the European year of cultural heritage. Many in-depth analysis of the next two days will be linked to the three strategic objectives that the European Commission assigned to the new agenda on culture, based on the social, economic and foreign dimension. In different fields, but linked to each other, there will be talks not only on the central themes of promotion, but also social sustainability and planning on a cultural basis, accessibility, culture and well-being, energy efficiency of historical buildings, creative driven entrepreneurship, technology and innovation of product and process, up to the opportunity of 5G for the field. In this contest the collaboration between public and private – a topic always important at LuBec, that will be discussed during the plenary session – can contribute to develop virtuously and jointly the primary needs of the protection and the just as essential ones of promotion, in all cases in which the partnership can be useful to form managerial skills and resources to complete the public ones now – and presumably in the future, – which are currently unable to sustain the projects of promotion meant broadly, of all our enormous cultural heritage”.
At the opening of the event some young people sang the national anthem of the Italian Republic, then followed the Thai national anthem, being Thailand the Guest Country of this edition, and lastly a video message was shown from the representatives of the local Institutions.
The Mayor of Plovdiv, Ivan Totev, spoke at 9.30 am on the first day of the event in the panel “CULTURE AND SOCIAL INNOVATION: DRIVER FOR THE WELL-BEING AND SUSTAINABILITY” during an in-depth discussion on “Being a European capital of culture between inclusion, innovation and entrepreneurship”. Totev presented a dossier that shows an overview of Plovdiv European Capital of Culture 2019, whose official inauguration is set for the 12th of January 2019, reported in 2015 as the sixth best city in the world to be visited. In the presentation there were many references to the history, the life-style, the local economy, the transformation that occurred in the last years and the growing quality of life.
Marco Montecchi, President of the Italian Chamber of Commerce in Bulgaria, spoke at 3pm of the same day in the panel “#TTC – TOURISM, TECHNOLOGY AND COMMERCE FOR THE PROMOTION OF TERRITORIES” to discuss “Internationalization and collaboration between institutions for the development of companies between culture and tourism”. After thanking the President of the Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Craftsmanship and Agriculture of Matera Angelo Tortorelli, who chaired the panel, and the Director of LuBec and the Vice President of Promo PA, Francesca Velani, the President Montecchi spoke underlining how the Italian Chamber of Commerce in Bulgaria is an integral part of the process of internationalization that more and more Italian cultural companies and associations are choosing. “The desire for cultural exchanges, in this case between Bulgaria and Italy, is constantly growing. A couple of weeks ago we were invited by the Mayor of Nessebar, one of the most ancient cities in Bulgaria and in Europe, as well as a UNESCO heritage site, in order to twin the city with one of our Italian cities. As a Representative of the 30 Chambers of Commerce in all of Europe I am witnessing this growing attention towards culture and Italy –is developing in other countries as well” said Montecchi in a passage of his speech.
Other people that took part to the conference were Albino Caporale, Director of the Productive Activities in the Tuscany Region; Vito Signati, Director of CESP – Center for Services for Small and Medium Enterprises of Matera; Gianni Masoni, Responsible for Tourism in the region – professional formation Confesercenti Tuscany and Mario Bruno, Mayor of Alghero.
The two days were divided up into discussions and in-depth analysis on the themes of the programme, as well as into workshops, seminars, talks, conferences and presentations. The event was a precious opportunity to emphasize the evolution of processes, services and products in the industry of cultural heritage – technology – tourism, by involving the operators and stakeholders from all of Europe, necessary so that the policies and goals can become good practice.
To strengthen and make a reality for all participants the possibilities for creativity and innovation of our cultural system, together with this event was held the LuBeC Digital Technology, the exhibition of touristic and cultural products and services.
Particularly important were the many moments of networking during which the President Montecchi talked with the representatives and speakers present at the event, creating also occasions for discussion between Federico Pizzarrotti, the Mayor of Parma, next Italian Capital of Culture 2020, and his counterpart of Plovdiv Ivan Totev, for the development of future projects together, with the assistance and support of the Italian Chamber of Commerce in Bulgaria.