MILAN — Marino Vago hosted his first Sistema Moda Italia’s assembly as the fashion industry association’s president here on Tuesday at Palazzo Mezzanotte, which houses the Italian Stock Exchange.

As reported, Vago, who is chief executive officer of his family’s textile company Vago SpA, succeeded Claudio Marenzi, who helmed Sistema Moda Italia since 2013.

“It has been a wonderful experience, which has led to important results,” said Marenzi, mentioning first and foremost the creation of Confindustria Moda. “On 556 voters, we reached the unanimity in favor of Marino Vago, who I thank as he has been the person that, as vice president, walked with me through this journey,” he added, before passing the baton to the new president.

Vago took the opportunity to introduce the new team of vice presidents he assembled and to outline the challenges the association will have to face.

In particular, Sergio Tamborini of Marzotto Group will oversee industrial politics; Andrea Tamborelli of the namesake company will helm the Treasury and the traceability office; Reda 1865’s ceo and Milano Unica president Ercole Botto Poala will oversee the trade shows; Alfredo Grassi SpA’s president and ceo Roberto Grassi will lead the product groups and Pianoforte Holding SpA’s vice president Carlo Palmieri will oversee the companies and activities related to Southern Italy.

Vago also said four panels will be created to study strategies related to key topics such as employees’ training, sustainability, international promotion and technological implementations.

“The task of our colleagues overseeing these commissions will be to sensitize and involve other entrepreneurs into such topics, expanding everybody’s direct engagement in order to face the industry’s issues with a down-up approach and not vice versa,” Vago said.

Preliminary 2017 data released by the association showed how the Italian textile and fashion industry is experiencing a positive moment.

In particular, last year sales were up 2.4 percent to 54.1 billion euros, with exports accounting for 30.6 billion euros of the total sales and registering a 3.5 percent growth.

Exports of textile and fashion companies increased at a different pace, reporting a 1.8 and 4.7 percent growth, respectively.

Overall, sales in European countries were up 4.1 percent, with best performances coming from Germany, the U.K. and Spain, which reported a 4.2 percent, 4.9 percent and 6.2 percent increase, respectively. Extra-UE destinations were also up 3.3 percent, propelled by China and Russia, which registered a 12.6 percent and 11.4 percent growth, respectively.

Import also increased 2.2 percent, totaling more than 21 billion euros in the first 11 months of 2017.

Projections for the first half of 2018 show the consolidation of this positive trend, with sales expected to grow 2.6 percent — 2.2 percent and 3 percent for the textile and fashion categories, respectively — and exports seen gaining 3.1 percent.

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