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the progress time • Tabloid di economia e cultura internazionale •

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Di Barbara Ganetti In questo 2020 stiamo riscoprendo la centralità dell’essere umano che, tentando di imporsi e dominare la natura grazie alla tecnica, si ritrova sempre piu’ fragile e impotente di fronte alla ribellione della natura stessa. Dopo Platone la Filosofia ha cessato di proiettare il pensiero verso un’ armonizzazione dell’essere umano con la natura, il pensiero filosofico ha cessato di cercare la verità ma si e’ piuttosto soffermato su come il genere umano stesse cercando unicamente di speculare dalla natura, soddisfacendo unicamente la necessità di potere su essa. “Io esisto se riesco a dominare, la natura deve soddisfare unicamente i miei bisogni”. In questa pubblicazione tratteremo naturalmente alcuni aspetti sociologici della pandemia Sars 2 Covid-19 che ha innescato questo processo di nuova ricerca nella centralità dell’essere umano, forse dimenticata da tempo, che di colpo ci ha imposto di rimettere in discussione i rapporti sociali, sanitari e lavorativi. In particolare ci soffermeremo sul mondo femminile, la sua visione delle cose e le sue conquiste a livello mondiale, ma anche quanto sia oggi penalizzato dalla pandemia in atto rispetto al genere maschile. Si segnalano ai nostri lettori alcuni interventi di personalità femminili saudite, che ci aiuteranno a capire come stanno vivendo questo momento epocale, e quali strategie intendono attivare per cogliere le nuove opportunità culturali, sociali e imprenditoriali che si profilano nell’ orizzonte mondiale. Per lo sviluppo di questa edizione si rivolge un ringraziamento particolare a S.A.R. Principe Faisal bin Sattam bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Ambasciatore del Regno dell’Arabia Saudita in Italia, Malta e San Marino, per averci concesso una sua intervista nella quale toccheremo i temi legati agli sforzi impiegati sulla coperazione mondiale dal Regno Saudita a inizio pandemia che, protraggono fino ad oggi con la presidenza del G20. Inoltre si ringrazia la preziosa cooperazione della Reale Ambasciata dell’Arabia Saudita in Italia, per averci creato una piattaforma di dialogo con le personalità saudite intervistate.

Do not disturb the free flight where the crepuscles meet - Private collection of ARO’, oil painting of canvas, 100x70 cm.

THE PROGRESS TIME keeps distinguish itself, with its multicultural information devoted to the global economy, using eminent and reliable sources, it enhances the readers an increased knowledge of the treated countries, overcoming the stereotypes often imposed by miscommunication, and today, in some frequent cases, the complete lack of information from Italian companies that address their services and products to international markets.

What THE PROGRESS TIME offers is a visibility of highest international ranks, via an on-line tool directed to insiders of the economic and cultural segment, and It is supported by special quarterly contents and publishings that are realized with the cooperation of the international diplomatic world, global Chambers of Commerce, multinational enterprises, research and cultural institutes, aiming to encourage the development of new interconnections, as

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Saudi Arabia G20 and Sars 2

Interview to H.R.H. Prince Faisal bin Sattam bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Ambassador of the Kindom of Saudi A By Ivan De Stefano

In this historic moment linked to the Covid19 pandemic, the use of technology is being enhanced as a tool for exchanging values ​​and new business opportunities. What role and impact will technology and digitization have on innovation in Saudi Arabia’s transformation plan? Saudi Vision 2030 aims to transform Saudi Arabia into a globally competitive ICT hub and its goals are designed to achieve efficiencies in government through greater automation. This requires digitization. Digitization is an enabler for any development program. The Kingdom has already taken significant steps towards ensuring a speedy development towards digital transformation, through the adoption of state-of-the-art telecommunications and ICT technology. Among the G20 countries, Saudi Arabia ranks as the top Digital Risers thanks to comprehensive government programs, like the Saudi Arabia’s ICT Strategy 2023 (source: 2020, European Center for Digital Competitiveness). Furthermore, in line with Vision 2030, all government entities are mandated to provide their services to citizens and stakeholders digitally, digitize their operations and move paperless. Last October, Saudi Arabia organized the AI Global Summit, which coincided with the meetings of Saudi Arabia’s G20 2020 Presidency and it was considered as one of the most important events in the global digital economy agenda. During the Summit, Saudi Arabia set out a multi-faced strategy to become world leader in artificial intelligence by 2030. What role does artificial intelligence play in Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030? Saudi Arabia has a strong foundation for its AI ambitions, based on the country’s unique scale in critical industries and its position as an investment powerhouse with a focus on technology. The Saudi megaprojects launched under Saudi Vision 2030, including NEOM smart city, Qiddiya entertainment and leisure capital, and the National Industrial Development and Logistics Program, will provide testbeds and living laboratories for advanced AI and data-driven concepts and applications. The Kingdom has already implemented a unique data infrastructure with a centralized ecosystem of resources. This will support government agencies to successfully complete their AI initiatives, including a National Data Bank, G-Cloud, and a whole-government analytics and AI platform. Artificial Intelligence is currently contributing to the Saudi GDP between $4 and $5 billion, but the rise of artificial intelligence is expected to contribute more than $130 billion to the Kingdom’s GDP by 2030. AI is a cornerstone of Saudi Arabia’s economy, with 70% of the Vision 2030 being linked to Artificial Intelligence and data management in the coming years.

The Kingdom seeks to build one of the largest data centers in the region. The global value of data management is predicted to create almost 3.4 million jobs. Saudi Arabia aims to attract and incentivize local and foreign investors and companies to encourage investment in qualified opportunities within the Kingdom. Saudi AI strategy aims to attract a total of $20bn in FDI and local investments by 2030. From 2025 until 2030, Saudi Arabia will shift focus to establishing the foundations of a competitive international AI ecosystem, by developing specialisms in specific areas of AI, to become one of the leading AI and data-driven economies by 2030. In the initial stage, the Strategy will focus on initiatives to accelerate the use of AI in five critical sectors: mobility, education, government, energy and healthcare.The coronavirus has accelerated the adoption of artificial intelligence in the healthcare sector. In Saudi Arabia, the Saudi Artificial Intelligence Authorities (SDAIA) had a leading role in facing the pandemic, addressing the risk of its spread and in developing innovative solutions through initiatives based on data and artificial intelligence. Last October, SDAIA presented the initiatives undertaken to contrast the spread of Covid-19 to the Festival of Diplomacy of Rome, which this year hosted Saudi Arabia as a guest of honor. The Saudi G20 Presidency started in December 2019 under the theme “Realizing Opportunities for all” and is going to end in November 2020. Which are the main achievements of the G20 Saudi Presidency and how the pandemic impacted on its agenda? At the breakout of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Saudi Presidency adapted its original agenda to consider the new realities. This year, the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic has spread to reach the global economy, financial markets, trade, and global supply chains, not to mention the tragic toll on human lives. This in turn, has hampered growth and development, reversing the gains accomplishments of the last years. Therefore, we added several priorities to our baseline agenda to address this global challenge, including the immediate response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Immediately after outbreak of the pandemic, the Saudi G20 Presidency conveyed the Extraordinary G20 Leaders’ Summit to make a decisive commitment to fight the pandemic and called for the provision of immediate resources, in order to protect lives, livelihoods, economies and the most vulnerable. The G20 members and invited countries pledged over US$21 billion to support funding in global health. Saudi Arabia, by itself, pledged US$500 million to support global efforts in combating the COVID-19 pandemic. G20 members have also injected around US$11Trillion into the global economy to mitigate socio-economic and financial impacts of the pandemic. The G20 also launched a debt suspension initiative for the least developed countries.

The Kink of Saudi Arabia, The Sultan Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud.




Arabia in Italy, Malta and San Marino.

women and increase their labor participation? Addressing persistent social and economic inequalities between women and men is a fundamental driver of sustainable development. Unleashing access to opportunities for women is integral to all dimensions of sustainable and inclusive growth and will help women to achieve their full potential in the 21st Century. The Saudi G20 Presidency is strongly committed to work, in continuation with previous G20 Presidencies, in making concrete progress to empower girls and women, in line with the United Nations Sustainable Goal number 5. In this sense, the financial inclusion for women and youth is tremendously important, because nowadays still 1.7 billion adults on earth (mostly women and youth) are excluded. This approach is fully aligned with Saudi Vision 2030’s reforms. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has embarked on an exceptional reform journey to empower women and support their participation in national development through this inclusive approach. Regarding financial inclusion, for example, the government introduced incentives for institutions to finance female-led businesses and amendments were adopted to prohibit gender-based discrimination in accessing financial services. In order to improve women participation in the labor force, the government also equalized the retirement age for women and men at 60 years, extending women’s working lives, earnings and contributions. Furthermore, amendments were


adopted to protect women from discrimination in employment, to prohibit employers from dismissing a woman during her pregnancy and maternity leave. The World Bank’s “Women, Business and the Law 2020” study, which tracks how laws affect women in 190 economies, stated that Saudi Arabia is the country which has made “the biggest improvement globally” since 2017 in different sectors, including advances in women’s mobility, sexual harassment, retirement age and economic activity. In lights of the reforms undertaken, Saudi Arabia is considered one of the leaders in the Arab world in terms of women empowerment and has been declared Capital of Arab Women 2020 by the Arab Women’s Committee. The essential contribution of women to communities, societies and economies, as well as the high costs of gender inequality need to be fully recognized, especially within the context of economic crises and global recessions, like the one we are facing due to Covid-19. In this contest, promoting dialogue and cooperation on policies, fostering partnerships and sharing of best practices have proven to have a positive impact to address the persisting challenges. In light of the above, in November 2020, under the auspices of the G20 2020 Saudi Arabia Presidency, the Saudi Embassy in Rome has organized a virtual conference on inclusion and gender equality, in order to encourage a fruitful discussion and exchange of best policies and practices among representatives of the institutional and business sectors of Saudi Arabia and Italy.

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Editore Ivan De Stefano

Direttore Responsabile Barbara Ganetti

Collaboratori: Cosetta Chiti Mattia Padella Hamish Mayne Sinclair Stamperia: Centro Stampa Q u o t i d i a n i S . P. A . Vi a d el l’ Indust r i a , 5 2 25030 - Erbusco (BS) L a p u b b l i c a z i o n e e’ s t at a finita di stampare il 21.11.2020

Contatti: Te l . + 3 9 0 3 8 4 2 7 6 0 9 4

This initiative would allow beneficiary countries to defer USD14 billion in debt payments due in 2020 and in 2021, and will use these amounts for financing their health systems and social programs. With the firm believe that combatting the Covid-19 pandemic calls for a coordinated, concerted global response, the Saudi Presidency of the G20 organized the “International Standards Summit”, in cooperation with International Electro-Technical Commission (IEC), International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and International Telecommunication Union (ITU). The summit, which took place on November 2020, was a landmark event. It enabled, for the first time, key stakeholders and decision makers within G20 member states to exchange experiences and perspectives on the importance of international standards and to present the work related to international standardization in crisis management strategies and digital transformation.Despite the pandemic, the Saudi G20 2020 Presidency continued its efforts to steer the collective work of the world’s largest economies to find common sustainable economic policies to empower people and to safeguard planet earth, with the firm belief that international community should be forward-looking and adopt a bold long-term vision that makes the most of the current wave of inno-

vation to shape new frontiers. It is worth mentioning that, this year and for the first time, the G20 Presidency hosted a meeting of the Heads of Space Agency of the G20 countries. The meeting, entitled Space Economy Leader Meeting – 20, focused on the importance of the space economy and its contribution to the global economy and stability, to the promotion of cooperation and, in particular, to space collaboration for peaceful purposes. During the Saudi Presidency, has also come together for the first time the Value 20, an emerging global community of academic experts and practitioners in the context of global public policy. Value 20 is working to promote a people-centered public policy, which can have immediate relevance for the SGDs and the G20’s objectives and to obtain better societal and economic outcomes.The Saudi Presidency built on the strong legacy of the G20, which has demonstrated the ability to take the long-term view of future challenges and opportunities and to deal effectively with urgent issues, like the current pandemic. We look forward to continue exchanging experiences, solidifying global cooperation and to find solutions to common challenges under the next Italian G20 Presidency. What was the role of gender equality in the Saudi G20 Presidency agenda? What initiatives have been taking place in Saudi Arabia to empower


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Interview to Ms. Hind Al Zahid, Undersecretary for women’s empowerment at The Ministry of Human Resource and Social Development.

Prestigious Properties in Milan Italy.

By Ivan De Stefano

By Mattia Padella

Ms. Hind Al Zahid

Saudi women are expected to play a vital role in Saudi Vision 2030. Which is the share of women in the leadership positions in Saudi Arabia today? And which are the major policies or goals set by the ministry to have more women in top leadership positions and in decision-making? Women empowerment is one of Vision 2030 objectives . Having more women in leadership positions is one of these KPIs., since the percentage of women in senior and middle management positions is currently 25.9%. Therefore, it is a great challenge. This is what led the Ministry laying out several initiatives to achieve and raise this percentage to 30% by 2030. The gender balance program , the National Platform for Women Leaders QIYADYAT.gov.sa, is indeed a digital tool that enables government and private sectors to have access to female leaders in order to nominate them to leadership roles. We also launched the Women Leaders Program in cooperation With INSEAD business school, to train and guide 1,700 women around the Kingdom. Last but not least, we are working with the capital market authority to have more women on the board of listed companies and at least 30% of them on the directors’ one. Women have been hit harder by socio - economic impacts of COVID-19. Which is Saudi Arabia’s strategic plan to empower women in light of the challenges posed by the pandemic? The empowerment of women in the Saudi labor market has made great leaps over the past two years, as the economic participation of Saudi

women jumped from 17% in 2017 to 26% by the end of 2019. As a host of G20 in 2020, Saudi Arabia has an additional responsibility and a great opportunity to contribute to this ongoing priority, which includes a global effort to reduce the impact of COVID 19 on our labour market and the promotion and building on agreed and accepted international principles and standards. Adopting social protection is a specific policy priority for our presidency: indeed we aim at reflecting the change patterns of work with the purpose of ensuring success to adequate social protection for all.. This is of critical importance not only due to the impact of COVID 19 but also due to its effects on a long run. Gender equality remains a high priority as we recognize the impact of COVID 19 crisis on women ‘s work. We must ensure that these objectives remain high on our policy agendas throughout the recovery and beyond. Technology significantly enhanced its role during the COVID-19 crisis. How technology can empower women and what is its role in Saudi society? What is women’s use of technology in Saudi Arabia? The Kingdom has witnessed a major revolution in technology and this is still happening and the presence of Saudi women in this revolution has become clearer and clearer. Perhaps e-marketing as well as its use of software interfaces is one of the most important areas for us, because of the presence of women in the field of data science, business analysis, artificial intelligence, robotics and

Mr Alberto Moro, Moro Real Estate Founder

forums. The Ministry of Communications and Information Technology in the Kingdom has a department for empowering women in the field of communications and information technology, as it works through initiatives and projects in cooperation with major professional companies to transfer and develop competencies and experiences as well as create initiatives to raise the contribution of Saudi women in the field of communications and information technology in the private and non-profit sector Forbes Arabia pointed out your business talent and success and described you as one of the most promising entrepreneurs in Saudi Arabia. How work-life balance helps women to succeed? The woman is still the man’s partner in the journey of life, as he and despite the woman’s entry into the field of business, she still bears the responsibility for her home and her family even in the presence of servants and providing full care and support for them. We know that women can work in more than one task at the same time and this distinguishes them a lot from men. The requirements of life have become more and it has become necessary for women to work regardless of their aspirations and self-fulfillment. I believe that the presence of good organization in time management, awareness and understanding by the husband, father, brother and family is of great importance for women’s participation in work and as a partner in facing life’s responsibilities. This is the biggest reason for success, by working with and investing on women.

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portant positions: First Vice-President and then President of ASPESI Milano from 2017 (National Association of commercial promotion and development companies) Advisor of FIABCI Italy from 2014 (International Federation of real estate professionals) The quality of services offered by Moro Real Estate has been recognised, chosen and appreciated by the Managing Directors and employees of the major multinationals in the Milan area.Moro Real Estate has been registered with the Japanese Chamber of Commerce since 2000.Its clients’ real estate searches are followed daily by a Property Finder. For over twenty years it has been meeting the needs of the most important companies and of selected private clients in the search for prestigious properties.

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Interview to Princess Haifa Al Mogrin, Saudi Arabia’s permanent representative to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and assistant deputy minister for G20 Affairs under the Ministry of Economy and Planning.



Where is it going...

Interview with Prof. Giuseppe Cerasari, previous infectious disease specialist and researcher at IRCCS Spallanzani of Rome and San Camillo Forlanini of Rome. By Ivan De Stefano

By Ivan De Stefano

Saudi Arabia is a member of the UNESCO executive council. How is the kingdom extending cooperation with all other members and promoting tolerance with the main goal of preserving Arab culture and heritage? Culture is a global common denominator and preserving the world’s heritage brings people closer and strengthens the bases of dialogue, exchange and understanding between them.

Prof. Giuseppe Cerasari

We are committed to preserving the world’s heritage as members of the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage and as members of the World Heritage Committee. We believe that we have a significant role in building cultural bridges between member states.

These changes due to the pandemic, in addition to directly affecting the economy in general, are having a great impact on the social sphere of the human condition which within the space of a very short time, has even lost the last assumptions of being put at the centre for rights and self-expression, already quite fragmented by technique; In this period social relations are very compromised, but above all let us not forget how much the restrictions resulting from the containment of the pandemic are affecting women.

Together, we will contribute to safeguarding our heritage in a spirit of cooperation and mutual assistance. Our efforts will lead to a better understanding of our strong relations as well as promoting tolerance and respect through highlighting the common ground between us – that is our humanity. The friendship between Saudi Arabia and The Republic of Italy is the basic pillar of Saudi-Italian relations. What role did Saudi Arabia play in order to maintain such a strong relationship? The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Republic of Italy share strong relations. The history of Saudi-Italian relations date back to almost 90 years. The year 2019 has witnessed outstanding developments in this regard. One great example is the event called “The Italian Village”, and it was held in conjunction with the Italian Super Cup match in Jeddah in January, 2019. Furthermore, we had the chance to showcase some of our cultural treasures with our friends in Italy during the ‘Roads of Arabia’ exhibition held in Rome, other than that we still have a lot to share. More recently, Saudi Arabia signed

“The friendship between Saudi Arabia and Italy”.

a cultural agreement with the Italian government to host a high-level cultural conference on the margins of the G20 meetings in 2021, which highlights the aligned vision between the two countries on the global importance of culture. We also invite our Italian friends to visit Saudi Arabia and enjoy the diverse cultural heritage and try authentic Saudi Arabian cuisine.

Princess Haifa Al Mogrin

In fact, most women have found themselves taking on not only the role of mother but also the full-time educator, contributing nevertheless to the family economy. This aspect will certainly be penalising at a global level, it will be necessary to rebuild the cultural and social fabric, based on the needs that the family and the human race will have to face. During any pandemic or lethal virus, fear without information generates chaos and discrimination, I believe you can confirm this, I remind readers that you experienced in the medical field, the first AIDS patients in Italy; how much of a role does correct information play during this global game? The right information is everything! Of course, the contradictions and schools of thought in the medical field, as we are used to seeing in this period, certainly bring further disorientation to the political world and to the population in general. A very important aspect with respect to the Covid-19 pandemic, that is often overlooked, is the use of the data collected which, in addition to calculating the various parameters such as the lethality rate, mortality and other indices, allows us, through the use of certain indicators, some of which are understandable to most people, such as the percentage of occupancy of beds in intensive care, others more complex and often subject to interpretation, to make optimal predictions to be used for the implementation of containment measures. I would like to remind you, as you pointed out in your question, that at the dawn of the appearance of the first cases of AIDS in Italy, I found myself at the front line dealing with a very virulent virus completely new to the scientific world. This virus, which not only caused deaths very quickly, also did not respond to any known treatment.

A similar consideration for Hepatitis C; today, after countless advances in the scientific field for both pathologies, we can say that we have succeeded in discovering more about the modes of transmissions and hence been able to counteract its spread, by formulating effective antiretroviral drugs, allowing a normal life expectancy. For Hepatitis C, today we are able to totally eradicate the virus on subjects, although we do not have a vaccine to prevent contagion, as for AIDS. However, in the future there will be the emergence and spread of new viruses with consequent epidemics, but we must be ready by increasing research and data analysis. The Italian know-how in the field of research is one of the best in the world, in which direction is our research going on Covid-19? Italy is among the most competent nations with the best scientists. At the moment, trials are underway for the vaccine for SARS CoV-2, but I remind you that the implementation processes for its realisation are very complex. Surely today we are more prepared than the first wave, we have data and experience to avoid the progression of respiratory complications and thus reduce mortality. Certainly, scientific research in general needs more time and sufficient data for containment. Currently, the weapons necessary for containment remain essentially 3: physical distancing – Hand hygiene – early start of therapy at the first evident symptoms. Should we get used to pandemics of this magnitude in the coming years? Certainly, this pandemic is only the expression of an altered ecosystem balance, and the emergence of viral mutations is its natural expression. Today, the impact of climate change and deforestation, together with globalisation, not only have a huge impact on our quality of life, but also encourages the development of new viruses as species jump from animal to human. So, I feel that I can answer by saying that rather than getting used to pandemics, we will have to be ready to fight them in the scientific field by trying to rebalance our already proven eco-system.



Interview to Ms. Sarah R. Al Husseini, General Director for International Cooperation and Chair of the G20 Tourism Working Group. By Mattia Padella

Tourism is considered the most dynamic sector and was the fastest to grow before the pandemic. Will tourism soon show its adaptability to the new context and will it be able to reaffirm its leadership? How tourism restart in the Middle East area is crucial to overcome Covid19 economic crisis? Tourism is a truly dynamic sector. Last year global travel and tourism growth outpaced the one of the global economy for the ninth year in a row, at 3.5% versus 2.5%. In addition, following Saudi Arabia’s historic launch of the tourist e-visa in September 2019, the Kingdom experienced a surge in international tourism with travel and tourism GDP increasing by 14.0% - one of the highest rates globally. While the global pandemic has caused the biggest blow to our sector to date, at the same time, I believe it led to highlight the importance of tourism more widely. With international travel and tourism being brought to a standstill at global level, people have learnt just how much their countries’ and towns’ economies rely on it. Meanwhile it has encouraged people to explore destinations closer to home, strengthening domestic tourism, and demonstrating the adaptability of travelers and the sector itself. It is estimated that Saudi citizens spend $15 billion abroad each year. Our Saudi Summer campaign was launched in June this year and aimed at encouraging Saudis to explore local destinations. It has been a great success, with 10 destinations in the Kingdom showcasing the incredible variety of experiences within Saudi Arabia. Saudi citizens made 18 million visits in just the first month, and since the end of June Saudis have generated over SAR8 billion in domestic tourism spending. Through this, we have also demonstrated two important things: firstly, that people do want to travel and have these experiences again, and secondly, that tourism can be done in a safe way. This is a solid foundation to build upon as we welcome back international travelers from the beginning of next year. The G20 2020 Saudi Presidency focuses on Tourism as a “Force for Human-Centered Economic Growth”. Is the tourism sector a major force to empower people and to reach the Sustainable Development Goals? solutely. Our chosen theme reflects

the fact that tourism is ultimately all about people. Tourism has the power to transform lives by stimulating economic growth and development, providing jobs and livelihoods, and spreading intercultural understanding, tolerance and peace. Coupled with the sector’s efforts in environmental sustainability as well as the cooperation between the public and private sector, tourism is a main contributor to the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals. solutely. Our chosen theme reflects the fact that tourism is ultimately all about people. Tourism has the power to transform lives by stimulating economic growth and development, providing jobs and livelihoods, and spreading intercultural understanding, tolerance and peace. Coupled with the sector’s efforts in environmental sustainability as well as the cooperation between the public and private sector, tourism is a main contributor to the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals. Before the global pandemic, the travel and tourism sector employed more than 300 million people, representing 1 in 10 jobs on the planet, and over the last five years, 1 in 4 new jobs created was in travel and tourism . With low barriers to entry in terms of skills, education and training, as well as relatively low startup costs for entrepreneurs, tourism offers employment opportunities for marginalized groups of people, including women, youth and those living in rural communities. At the same time, demand for sustainable tourism is rapidly growing, and we have ensured that the principles of sustainability, responsibility and inclusivity lies at the heart of Saudi Arabia’s tourism development strategies. The Al Ula Project is a great example of this: a flagship sustainable destination, where travelers can enjoy the best of our culture, heritage and history, without worrying about potential negative impacts on the environment or local populations. What the Saudi G20 Presidency can do for the tourism sector? As the first Arab host of the G20, Saudi Arabia recognized, at the outset of the Kingdom’s Presidency, that tourism should be a major focus of this year’s G20. The priority for this year’s TWG was set to “Tourism as a means of sustainable socio-economic development”. Underneath this priority, the Al Ula Framework for Inclusive Community Development highlights

the importance of sustainable and inclusive growth; while the Seamless Travel and Improved Traveler Experience report emphasizes the growing impact of technology and the importance of a good traveler experience. The outbreak of Covid-19 has undoubtedly impacted and re-shaped our agenda. Since March, the Ministry of Tourism has been collaborating with public and private sector partners to establish a coordinated response to the pandemic, in partnership with the tourism industry. In April, the Tourism Ministers gathered in an Extraordinary Meeting to discuss an aligned response to the crisis. They agreed on measures that protect businesses and employees, foster the sector’s recovery, and build its resilience for the future. Indeed, we also updated our two outcomes to incorporate communities’ resilience and gather additional best practices and recommendations on digital health checks in airports and other aspects of crisis management. Going forward, we hope to continue our cooperation to ensure further progress on tourism policies during Italy’s G20 Presidency in 2021 What’s the state of being for the tourism sector in Saudi Arabia? There is a bright future ahead of us. Opening the Kingdom’s doors to international tourists will continue to increase opportunities for Saudis both economically and socially, and showcase our unique culture to the world. At the crossroads of three continents, Saudi Arabia sits within a vast region, with a dynamic population, a rich history and exciting offerings – which we are thrilled to share with the world. We strongly believe that tourism promotes openness, improves quality of life, and safeguards natural and cultural heritage for future generations – all key aspects of Saudi’s Vision 2030. It is something that all Saudi citizens can be proud of, whether at home or abroad.

Ms. Sarah R. Al Husseini



Interview to Ms. Dalma Malhas, Saudi show jumper and national team member in the Saudi Arabian Olympic Committee.


Interview to Ms. Razan Alazzouni, Saudi Fashion Designer, elected to be the face of the Young Generation Saudi Vision 2030, promoted by CNN globally & featured in Times Square, New York City.

By Cosetta Chiti

By Barbara Ganetti Abdulaziz bin Musaed, Director of International Relations of the Saudi Arabian Olympic Committee and Ms. Anna Azevedo, Director of Educational Programmes at the International Olympic Committee promoted and directly introduced the Olympic values to several segments of society.

Ms. Razan Alazzouni

How sport is promoting women empowerment and is contributing to the path toward gender equality? The development of women’s sports and physical activity is aligned with the aspects of Saudi Vision 2030. It aims at improving the health and the fitness of Saudi population. This is laying the groundwork for increasing female sports participation, since sports are opening to both genders. The Kingdom support and strategies are giving women a new opportunity especially in the international sports sector.

Ms. Dalma Malhas

Sport has only recently started playing an important role in Saudi society. Training Olympic athletes in Saudi Arabia, which is now in the process of building a sports ecosystem, must have been challenging. What is the strategy of the Saudi Arabian Olympic Committee to foster elite athletes? The Saudi Arabian Olympic Committee has adopted many new strategies and it is aiming at intensively promoting sports in the Kingdom. The president of SAOC, Prince Abdul Aziz bin Turki Al Faisal, chaired several driving initiatives involving different parties, from athletes, strategists, technical professionals and federations in order to promote athlete skills and capabilities and make them compete worldwide. The SAOC’s Athletes Commission was founded in 2019 and recently hosted the first international athlete’s forum. Our purpose is to raise the level of awareness between the population through all modern and classical ways; as well as providing support and infrastructures to further advance our level. For example, Qiddiya is one of the mega projects that aims at transforming the sports landscape in the country. “It will cater to all participants, from people who want to take part in recreational sports to developmental programs and elite athlete training facilities” Another key strategy is locally hosting world class competitions.

The Diriyah Equestrian festival is where I had the privilege to compete last year. It was a big honor and the dream to compete on home soil at such a competitive level came true. Moreover, another major event I’m really looking forward to is the 2024 Equestrian World Cup that will be hosted in Riyadh . Is the Saudi Athletes’ Commission engaged to the development of sports culture in Saudi Arabia and to the promotion of the Olympic values among the society? Saudi Arabia is very active in the development of sports within its culture, through clear and active strategies for both athletes and the public, especially the youth. As I mentioned earlier, the SAOC’s Athletes commission recently hosted a virtual forum under the patronage of SAOC President and minister of sports, HRH Abdulaziz bin Turki Al Faisal .This was a great opportunity to address athletes’ concerns and solutions to decision makers. At the same time it raised awareness on the importance of sport and the magnitude of the world class events to come. We are very active in promoting and highlighting the Olympic values. A major conference that took place in King Abdullah sports city is only one of the many initiatives working towards our objective. The presence of HH Prince Fahd bin Jalawi bin

Your personal athlete experience as a member of the Saudi national showjumping team comes from far away: you started to ride a horse at the age of four. Which is the most important life lesson you learned from sport? Sport gives an enormous opportunity to gain a lot: to learn, to win and to lose, to be part of a team. It makes us aware that there are rules, which must be known, respected, and sometimes “stretched”. It teaches to accept the judgments and decisions of those who are there for that and to face the hard work, to understand that going through & overcoming tough times is the way to success. Probably the most important thing sport has taught me is to be able to measure myself objectively with my limits, which sometimes move beyond and sometimes shrink. So every day we’re given the opportunity to study new strategies in order to deal with these situations and maybe even be useful to other people who are in a similar situation. I’d say learning how to balance skill, emotion and hard work is the most precious lesson I’ve learnt. Other things I’ve learnt are: asking intelligent questions, questions that lead to action and improvement; I learnt that taking action is important - you don’t always need to be 100% ready, sometimes you just need to take the jump; resist and persist has been my motto all the way.

Which are your brand core values? A brand core value is to create lasting clothing which is not seasonal but it’s works of art. Where do you draw your inspiration from? What feeds your creativity to present new ideas and what role plays the Saudi culture in inspiring your work? I usually take my inspirations from nature. I am inspired by the environment around me, that of my home land: from the colors of the sand, to the changes of the weather, to the culture that you can observe from one Saudi city to the other. What is in your opinion the relation between fashion and national identity in Saudi Arabia. Are young Saudi designers contributing in shaping a new image of the country? Young artists are the future of Saudi Arabia. Fashion is art! And art is a universal language that people use to express not only their emotions but also their culture and personalities. I think fashion in Saudi Arabia is a way of expression. It is also our way to distinguish ourselves. How the Saudi fashion industry is growing under Vision 2030? What support is the Saudi government proving to creatives and fashion entrepreneurs?

Now in Saudi Arabia you can see a lot of fashion forums and incubators. The government’s support for all these new emerging industries is so evident. We can see it in many events that Saudi culture ministry is hosting. What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome in your career? Which is your greatest ambition? One of the biggest challenges was getting international recognition, we started in a time when the fashion industry in Saudi Arabia was close to non-existent. Many designers would only work on supplying for the local market. Now the situation is different. Saudi is part of the global movement and you can see Saudi made products sold around the world. We take such pride in saying that our clothing is exported with a Made in Saudi Arabia label. Tell us more about yourself (educational background, general profession and non-profession interests). My greatest ambition is to gain international recognition as a fashion house and to create a Saudi fashion empire that will withstand time with products known for its quality and uniqueness. I guess I will indeed build my own empire out of my fashion house. It’s very ambitious but I think with time and hard work we will be a fashion house that will withstand time and exist for generations.That’s the hope, at least.


The colours of ARO’. By Ivan De Stefano

Saverio Aro’ busy with en plein air painting

Saverio Armenio, ARO ‘, was born in 1924 in Taranto. At the time, it was little more than a quaint old citadel squeezed around its harbor. The father works on ships, the mother, often alone, runs the house and six children with energy. Saverio appears different since the beginning: he wants to study, shows precocious talent and a vocation for drawing, unfortunately he is forced to go to work. But he is stubborn, motivated, imposes his needs and manages to attend an institute for technical designers. Artistically he is self-taught, even if, for a while, he follows the teachings of the painter and sculptor Francesco Paolo Como, author of the war memorial that adorns a square in Taranto. Arò turns out to be a strong personality who lives his passion as a necessity, an urgency to express himself. Rumor has it that he used his little sister’s cut hair for the first brushes. After the war, in which he participated as a young radio operator, he moved to Rome, driven as many others by the internal migrations of the first post-war period. It is 1949. In the capital the phase of turmoil is beginning which is already a prelude to the “economic boom” and the “dolce vita”, the city lives in a magical suspension between the province and the world.

tive, alongside today’s well-known artists. The official culmination is represented by the participation in several editions of the Quadriennale of Rome. His art works are requested and purchased, they enrich many collections of individuals, banks and public endowments, including that of the Palazzo delle Esposizioni or that of Giulio Andreotti. The sixties still belong to a naive era, the artist is not a manager of himself, between him and the collector the intermediation of the market and its agents is not yet so strong. A fundamental promotional role is played by public, local and private institutions which not only organize exhibitions, but also buy the art works directly from the artist. Only later, with the social transformations and the advent of Bolaffi, the situation begins to change, Arò escapes this new market logic, its bureaucratic shackles and the idea of having to pay to be considered an “artist”. Thus he renounced enrolling in the famous Bolaffi catalog which, in the following decades, would become an important and at times decisive tool for the evaluation of artists and their quotations. During the same years, due to family needs, he was forced to accept a secure job as a technical designer at the Ministry of the Navy. But he does not stop painting and exhibiting his paintings. He manages to reconcile the tendency to an ‘aesthetic’ life with a strong sense of responsibility towards family and work. He is also

very sensitive to the feminine charm which he often cannot resist ... Painting only partially reflects the restlessness of its existence. His work is highly materialistic, social and naturalistic. The subjects can be the boats, the seagulls, the olive trees of his adolescence, the primitive granite of Sardinia, loved and often visited, or the flexible women of his nudes, the characters caught indoors while the outside world of factories looms; and the theme of the non-innocence of industrial development prevails. It is most of the times a squared and volumetric painting style, even in portraits. In the eighties Arò kept on painting, mostly for himself, yet he took partin some exhibitions and competitions, but he began to isolate himself more and more, even geographically, taking refuge in a remote Tuscan village on the slopes of Pratomagno. Until, also due to an impending partial blindness, he ends up interrupting his relationship with the art world and with all kinds of social activities. Arò dies, following an accident that occurred for unclear causes, yet unsolved, in 2000, in Rome, where his son Antonio uselessly attempts to bring him back in order to prolong his life. Today, keeping faith with a project and a promise made to his father, Antonio Armenio tries to bring to light the fifty years of Arò’s artistic passion, allowing a wider audience to enjoy the art works of this interesting and original artist.

Arò quickly established himself in the artistic environment concentrated around the studios, galleries, attics of via Margutta which, at that time, was a permanent meeting point for already established artists and for those who perhaps will become one. In these areas Rome is close to Europe. Arò moves for a period of time to Paris, where he attends the Nude Academy at the International Artistic Association, and comes into contact with the Parisian artistic bohème environment. He returns to Italy and meets ... the woman who will become his wife, a girl from a farmer’s family in the Marche region, who will often be his model for paintings and sculptures. It is a positive and euphoric time for Arò who sees all his aspirations come true. And his canvases light up with vivid colours. Later he settled, with his family, permanently in Rome, where his two children Antonio and Maria were born. At the end of the 1950s Arò lives off his artistic work. The house has an adjoining studio and there he produces art works tirelessly, attends and often happens to receive artists such as Guttuso, Mafai, Attardi, Manzù and other characters of the Roman School, and more. He is present, more and more often, in exhibitions all over Italy, personal and collec-

Gasometer of Rome - 80x60 cm

Fishing light in shallow waters - 70x50 cm

Do not disturb the free flight where the crepuscles meet 100x70 cm


The Interior Design of Milan

Australia Consulenza and English in Italia

Interview to Adriana Lhomann artist designer, for The Interior Design in Milan Italy.

Interview with Ms.Peta L Lowry, Australia Consulenza Founder

By Barbara Ganetti

By Mattia Padella

Hotel Primorie Gelendzhik

Ms. Peta L Lowry

Mrs Adriana Lhomann If we think about international design we necessarily have to deal with the city of Milan, today not only a business city, but also a multicultural platform of artistic mergers attentive to the continuous change of our times. TID, acronym of The Interior Design, a project born in Milan more than six years ago from the idea of Mr. Francesco Tursini, immerses us in this continuous research of experimentation, thanks to the development and promotion in his gallery that, collaborating with many international artists, organizes unique and important events. In this regard, here is a very interesting artist from the TID team: former model of Brazilian origins, Adriana Lohmann arrived in Italy in 1989 and immediately immersed herself in style and design field, finding in herself an innate passion for beauty and, acquiring sartorial and decorative techniques related to the world of fashion. She began to study the history of art and clothing, craft techniques ranging from furniture design to its restoration, painting on fabric, Trompe l’oeil, papermaking techniques, mosaic, Feng shui and eco-sustainable design. In 1999, the awareness of her experimentation led her to found a design agency which in 2000 won the international competition of the “Fabbrica del vapore” (multifunc-

tional center of art), in Milan. At this point in her artistic life and continuous inner turmoil, she has been beginning a constant research on materials, which often comes from the world of fashion. Today Adriana Lohmann continues her search for beauty by experimenting with new forms of art, creating unique chandeliers, already appreciated in much of the world, objects that can be inhabited, lived or just watched. In a pleasant phone chat we had, you told me that your creations are unique, but at the same time they can also be developed in series, do you explain how? Sometimes I create specific handmade works of great proportion aimed at ambitious and unique projects, other times the client asks me for advice for his space. Whether it’s a private person, a company, an architect’s project or a temporary installation, I always try to look ahead, imagining every possible development and range of uses, in a coherent and pleasant way, such as from the chandelier to the floor lamp or the applique of the same collection. In recent times some important companies have turned to me to make use of my volcanic imagination and materialize works: creating pieces for a serial production produced by third parties has currently become an interesting stimulus and takes up a good part of my time. What do you try to express with your creations? My primary goal is to add positive emotions to the space in which my works will be placed. Through form,

Perla Tourbillon

material and color I try to achieve a perceptive and psychotherapeutic effect, a kind of “environmental acupuncture”. All this, with particular attention to perfect functionality. Does the pandemic we are experiencing hide new opportunities for your work? There is certainly a radical change in the way work is communicated, due to the difficulty of traveling, attending events or sector fairs: in this regard we are already using the best platforms to interact and communicate with our interlocutors, through consultancy, sales and online information. Furthermore, travel restrictions have created a new awareness of the value of living our personal space, both at work and at home. In practice, the requests for my design studio have increased. Then we are refining many ideas for outdoor products, for example, as the requirement of social distancing has increased the need to expand the physical presence towards the outdoor space. Restaurants, hotels and homes need new types of light and furnishings, which is why I am developing new ideas in this area. In addition, a renowned company asked me to create anti-Covid screens, so we have created a colored Plexiglas hedge to bring the energy of the plants into the spaces, in order to create more pleasant, even cheerful, private rooms. In practice, the pandemic situation has introduced new challenges and I am trying to do my part by offering functional, pleasant and sustainable solutions.

Royal Suite Living Area Hotel La Cigale Doha Quatar


Australia Consulenza is a consultancy company founded to identify opportunities and to provide a range of support services for the internationalisation of commercial and industrial companies interested in the Australian market. English in Italia is an English language cultural company providing linguistic and cultural support services mainly but not exclusively throughout regional Italy. Founded in Italy in 2009, by Ms. Peta L Lowry, Australia Consulenza focuses on the development of a dialogue platform centred on bilateral liaison services and contacts to support Italians wishing to move to Australia and Australians interested in moving to Italy, promoting business opportunities and commercial partnerships. Thanks also to the cultural network supporting these processes, Australia Consulenza provides a dense network of training and cultural exchange projects, such as the knowledge of English, and the geo-environmental map of the two countries. Driven by the linguistic and cultural needs identified by Australia Consulenza by working with individuals and organisations of the two countries, English in Italia, an organisation that has established a number of English Language Cultural Centres throughout regional Italy, was established by Ms. Lowry in 2011. The reputation acquired over the years by Australia Consulenza and English in Italia today allows us not to limit ourselves to the economic-cultural connection established between Australia and Italy, the service platform and international contacts make it possible to interconnect various countries that can weave bilateral interests both with Australia and with Italy. Ms. Lowry, the founder of Australia Consulenza and English in Italia is an Australian by birth, but an Italian by adoption, a country she loves and in which she has established her family and her business, but above all, she has experienced first-hand the process of moving to a country very different from her native land. Today Ms. Lowry, who boasts 30-years’ experience in senior management roles in Corporate Australia, provides her knowledge and expertise on the Australian market, identifying real business opportunities in support of economic and cultural processes, for both companies and individuals, eager to seize the opportunities that Australia offers. In this interview we ask the following questions: What new opportunities can the Australian market offer for Italian know-how? In my opinion, Italy has know-how developed through generations that is impossible for a young country such as Australia, to comprehend. The depth of knowledge, ingenuity and passion that generations of Italians have in various industries and sectors just doesn’t exist in Australia

due to its young age. The opportunity to share this in-depth knowledge and passion with Australians who are looking to develop new industries and businesses is exciting and could easily be the base for establishing business partnerships for Italian companies looking to expand their current reach. Initially by this exchange of knowledge, skills and ability, but also by developing partnerships with established or developing industries in Australia. How do you intend to manage your business with the profound economic and cultural changes imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic? The Covid-19 pandemic has taken a big toll on many industries and countries throughout the world, yet I feel it has also given us all time to reflect on the endless possibilities to connect with each other in new and exciting ways. The possibility to create connections and collaborations via the internet and online webinars and meetings is one that makes previously very expensive and time-consuming events and seminars much more affordable and accessible to big, medium and small enterprises wanting to explore opportunities to expand their own businesses and share their knowledge, skills and expertise with the world. Using academia as a base to explore the possibilities of collaborating with organisations and businesses in different countries and offer the younger generations the opportunity to connect with different cultures and ways of doing business is an excellent place to begin. The world is experiencing an acceleration never seen in history, with regard to the economic processes of change, unfortunately the Corona War will totally cancel some work activities worldwide, what new opportunities are emerging, and above all, how should they be seized? Innovating and possibly improving production technologies is necessary and I can’t think of any sector of the economy where there are no opportunities. Research needs to be increasingly supported by choosing and setting the desired objectives. I believe it is essential to the state in which the environment is located that research aims at the development of technologies that respect the environment and as much as possible bio, reforestation, sustainable and recyclable production. Promoting collaboration between universities of different backgrounds and cultures in order to favour the exchange of information and initiatives, establishing and sharing conferences, seminars, university courses with the relative exchange of teachers and students: if it is true that innovation is necessary research becomes a primary and essential objective to be strengthened.


info@theinteriordesign.it theinteriordesign.it


Interview to Mrs. Yulia Kartini, Rapresentative Indofood in Italy. By Barbara Ganetti


An authentic imagine of Japan Female literature from the Heian period – Interview with Paola Scrolavezza - By Mattia Padella Official source: Japanese Cultural Association in Italy

Mrs. Yulia Kartini

How is the food industry adjusting to this Covid 19 pandemic?

future, increasing its resilience and responsibility.

I think all market sectors have been hit hard by this pandemic and that we will struggle to return to an ever-changing “new normal”. Global consumer demand patterns are changing, especially supply chains that are under pressure from panic buying and stock piling. As a company we have adopted new operating methods, facing sudden changes in volumes, risks to the continuity of orders, the need to make decisions in real time. At a product and consumer level, we see changes in behavior especially in consumption choices, more attentive to quality, they see a link between health and food, but also costs, which will remain even after the end of the pandemic and offers opportunities for greater collaboration between the food and health industries.

We try to be more digital, have more variable cost structures, more agile operations and more automation; be present in e-commerce and have more robust capabilities in security. But on the other hand, we know that liquidity has become a critical survival factor, on both the sellers and the distributors behalf, so we try to come together to have a win win solution with them.

What new strategies is your company adopting to maintain its turnover in international markets? Technology, innovation and digitization to facilitate every aspect of the way we produce items and receive raw materials. We must take immediate action to support operations and to prepare the supply chain for the

Could you share with us details about the projects related to Indomie products for 2021? Our goal is to collaborate more with our distributors to aggressively penetrate the Italian market, targeting young professionals and students, making them aware of our products. Indomie must become a practical and delicious food symbol, available in all major supermarkets and shops. Next year we will also be launching INDOMIE in the Cup version, a quick, easy and portable meal as a response to an increasingly hectic lifestyle. Plus, we are introducing a new MI Goreng Barbeque Chicken flavor which was named the most delicious ramen in the world according to LOS ANGELES TIMES in 2019.

“But ordinary mountains and rivers, as they are, houses such as we see everywhere, with all their authentic beauty and harmony of form – these scenes, to paint them as they are, or to show what lurks behind a familiar hedge in a very secluded corner of the world, or a thicket of trees on some unheroic hill, and all this with adequate care of composition, proportion, and the like – are things that demand the highest master’s utmost skill and put the common craftsman to shame” Extract from Uma no Kami’s speech in the second chapter of Murasaki Shikibu’s Tale of Genji, which we present to you in the Italian translation by Adriana Motti from the English translation of Arthur Waley. In the four centuries or so, from the eighth to the twelfth, in which Heiankyō, now Kyoto, was the capital, it was seen as an enlightened aristocracy, cultured and sensitive to the overseas influences in which Chinese culture was dominant and perfectly integrated and assimilated, with ladies of the court that were undisputed literary protagonists. As much as it might be undeniable that numerous works by writers have been considered valuable since their contemporaneity, and that it is still agreed upon that Genji Monogatari is believed to be a masterpiece of all time Japanese literature, the more complicated factor is to be able to

give them due credit. Together with Paola Scrolavezza, Professor at the University of Bologna and curator of NipPop, we asked ourselves the following question: What does the female literature of the Heian period really represent, the cultural apogee of Japanese history? They are undoubtedly valuable works, but their place within the Heian culture was of little consequence, frivolities to which men rarely devoted themselves and which the same ladies of the court perceived nothing more than a divertissement. It would be wrong to think that these texts had the same importance at the time they were written as they do now, especially since after the Heian era many of them were almost forgotten, and the dames of the court were further submitted to male authority. Furthermore, they were not allowed to write in Chinese, in fact Genji Monogatari is mainly written in kana. Murasaki Shikubu had studied Chinese, but it was good practice for women not to be pedantic or to show off their knowledge of sinograms in the same way as men. To write “Genji Monogatari”, she used the indigenous script, the Hiragana, which was used by many female authors and hence was later named Onnade, “woman’s hand”. “It was not invented by women – explains Professor Scrolavezza – nor was it used exclusively by them. Although it is thanks to female works that the script has evolved and spread,

it is certainly inadequate to express the variety and nuances of a language that is so rich in homophones as Japanese.” Our question, therefore, seems to remain unanswered. It is the author with whom we opened this article, who has provided us with a different and decisive interpretation, precisely with the following quoted lines: “But the familiar mountains and rivers, as they are, the houses as we see them everywhere with all their authentic beauty and harmony of forms… are things that require the hand of the highest teacher.” It is the works of Murasaki Shikibu, Se Shōnagon, Izumi Shikibu and other female writers of the Heian period, which offer the reader something that is unavailable in men’s pieces: “It is about sensitivity and attention to life within the court. These authors leave us thoughts and intimacies, they describe their daily life with an attentive, often ironic gaze, and with a subtle acumen. Even though the Hiragana writing was not a real prerogative of women, it was nevertheless linked to them, so much so that men who wanted to compose works related to those genres, at times used female pseudonyms. We can thank no one but these female authors, if today we are able to have an authentic image of Japan at the height of its splendour, if we are able to see the Heian court as it was at the time of Genji, however imaginary, and – she concludes – in Japanese”





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