The Rome city council has awarded 1 million to 30 winners of a competition for immigrant entrepreneurs. More than 180 business people took part in the competition to win 40,000, half of which will not have to be repaid and half of which will be repayable at low interest rates. The ethnic businesses competing included an Indian tea-room, a clothing company for belly dancers, a Muslim undertaker and a mini-market selling speciality foods from the Balkans.
City mayor, Walter Veltroni, reminded all small and medium-sized businesses in the city that there is an office for social self-promotion in the citys department for employment. The office offers free advice to businesses that are trying to borrow money and find premises.