SAIE 2009: Building The Future, Today

The first positive signals have emerged from the building sector. Just over five months before the 45th SAIE is due to open (from 28 to 31 October 2009) more than 1,300 exhibitors have already booked space, equivalent to 75% of the total taking part in the 2008 show.

This is an extremely positive figure that conveys two clear messages. The first is that SAIE remains a crucial event for the entire building sector, as demonstrated by the more than 170, 000 visitors attending last year's show, more than 7, 000 of whom were international visitors. The second is the confirmation that the most effective way to tackle and overcome the world economic crisis is to continue to make medium and long-term investments in strategic sectors such as research and development, communication and innovation.

This figure points to a widespread awareness that while certain appointments are important in periods of economic growth, they are absolutely essential at times of stagnation or recession. It also reveals a process of reorganisation underway throughout the building sector concerning a wide range of aspects such as boosting research, consolidating environmental policies, technological innovation, improved safety regulations, site monitoring and adaptation of buildings in terms of static stability and energy efficiency. These common strategies are shared by the thousands of large, small and medium-sized building companies, producers, suppliers and specialists scattered throughout the country, thereby assuring the solidity of a sector that employs around 2 million workers and accounts for more than 12% of the country's GDP.

SAIE 2009 will address these themes through a series of targeted initiatives exploring the transformation processes that are under way in the building world. These include SAIEnergia, the theme show devoted to renewable energy and low-energy technologies for sustainable building, connected with the competition SAIE Selection on the theme of Low cost & Low energy sustainable housing; the events focusing on materials, including SAIELegno, LaterSAIE, SAIE New Stone Age Design and the biennial SAIEConcrete; SAIEBit, the exhibition devoted to Software Houses and Service Companies; and the annual appointments with the New Product Guide. These events will be rounded off by the usual packed programme of conferences and roundtable discussions to be held throughout the show.

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