Italy's wine producers are happy to see more and more buyers from China to choose Italian wine, especially in this year's wine exposition in Verona, the city of love in Italy.
During the 50th edition of the Vinitaly, an annual international wine fair in Verona, many wine producers witnessed a dialogue between Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi and Alibaba founder and Chairman Jack Ma.
"The future of Alibaba and the future of Italy are closely linked together. Jack has understood that digital economy can transform our economy," Renzi said at the forum of World Wine Web, which dedicated to the role of the web in the wine market.
Italy over the past 20 years "has lost too many opportunities in this sector", Renzi said while expressing his confidence over the future of making up for lost time.
On his part, Ma said that his platform in the past weeks has sold as many as 25 million bottles of wine, but only six percent were Italian compared to 55 percent of French. He highlighted "great potential for Italy."
Alibaba can be an important showcase for the made-in-Italy, which is very much appreciated in China, Ma said.
The Alibaba head also plans to launch the "Wine, wine, wine" Wine Day in China, which will kick off on September 9 at 9:00 a.m. on his e-commerce giant, as the number "nine" and the word "wine" have the same pronunciation in Chinese language, he explained.
Renzi also told some 600 audiences at meeting that the Italian government is organizing a "very important mission to China" for next November in the field of agro-food.
At the Vinitaly 2016 in Verona, international attendance from the most important producer countries has further expanded with China attending Vinitaly for the first time.
The focus of Italian wine is more than ever on business and has a special consideration for China, experts at the Verona wine fair said.
Denis Pantini, head of Wine Monitor of Nomisma research institute for economy, said that Italy unfortunately is not keeping pace with China's surging wine imports.
Last year Italy's exports to China grew by just 15 percent compared to 2014, and the first semester of 2016 has registered the same trend so far, Pantini told Xinhua.
French and Australian wines are performing much better, he observed, which is mainly due to larger and better organized companies in France and a free trade agreement signed between China and Australia.
"China's market is among the largest and fastest growing in the world, and Italy cannot miss such an important opportunity," Pantini told Xinhua.