The “American Dream” will come to life in Thessaloniki at this year’s 83rd Thessaloniki International Fair (TIF) - where the United States of America will be the honoured country - if one takes into account both the calibre of the companies that will be participating in the US pavilion - Microsoft, Google, Cisco, Coca Cola and Lockheed Martin - as well as the number of events that will frame the participation. As underlined by the TIF-Helexpo administration at a presentation today for the diplomatic corps regarding the upcoming event, the engines of the national exhibition body are at full throttle in preparation of the September Fair. “Our goal is for the 83rd TIF to be the best one yet, both as regards the numbers of visitors and exhibitors, as well as regards cultural events”, noted TIF-Helexpo President, Mr Tassos Tzikas. At the same time he underlined that the two main strategic wagers of the company, internationalisation - which is what led to the participation of the USA in the 83rd TIF - and the renovation of the Thessaloniki International Exhibition Centre. The Governor of Central Macedonia Apostolos Tzitzikostas characterised the 83rd TIF as a landmark-exhibition, noting that the participation of the USA as the honoured country is the most important event in the institution’s modern history. He also stressed that through the Fair Greek, American companies will have the opportunity to become well acquainted and reach good levels of cooperation, while at the same time it will send a clear message regarding the country and the region: that it remains dedicated to its traditional relationship with the USA. Mr Yiannis Boutaris, the Mayor of Thessaloniki underlined the close and effective cooperation of the Municipality with the TIF-Helexpo administration on all levels, while he stressed that the presence of the USA at the 83rd TIF is important because it restores balance. “We may be a member of the European Union, but we have traditional ties to the USA”, he explained, providing reassurance that the Municipality will do everything it can to support this year’s event and provide a festive atmosphere. The US government is aiming at highlighting its commitment to Northern Greece with its participation in the 83rd TIF, stressed US Consul General in Thessaloniki, Rebecca Fong, who pointed out that the US side considers its relationship with Greece important. In this framework the 83rd TIF will be visited by a high-ranking US delegation, which will include the US Secretary of Commerce, Mr Wilbur Ross. She also noted that in view of the 83rd TIF a series of precursor event is being planned, such as a visit by US astronaut Marsha Ives, who was on the International Space Station for 55 days, and who will talk about her experience at an event in Thessaloniki next month. “I hope that everyone will see this TIF as something exceptional, a truly regional event. I invite you all to visit the US pavilion”, she mentioned. Mr Athanasios Kouimtzis, the representative of the American-Hellenic Chamber of Greece hopes that the US pavilion will remain in upcoming Fairs and that the US participation will not just be passing through, also stressing that Greece must seize the opportunity of the US presence at the 83rd TIF. “We are very proud of the 83rd TIF. This year we will all experience the 'American Dream' in Thessaloniki”, stressed TIF-Helexpo CEO Mr Kyriakos Pozrikidis, making a brief presentation of the upcoming event. In fact, he noted that apart from major US companies, many smaller companies that do not have a presence in Europe will be participating at the 83rd TIF, while there will also be many surprises in the framework of the honoured country events.