Monica Kubik, Senior Show Manager, Paperworld Middle East
An interview with Monica Kubik, Senior Show Manager, Paperworld Middle East:
What is Paperworld Middle East?
Paperworld Middle East is the first-of-its-kind trade show in the region for the office and paper products industry. Brought to the Middle East by German trade fair and conference organiser Epoc Messe Frankfurt, the show is a development of the global Paperworld brand family, which is renowned as the trade platform of choice in this sector with the flagship event held annually in Frankfurt in January.
Where else is Paperworld held?
Paperworld is held in Frankfurt, Shanghai and Hong Kong and will also launch in Moscow this September. These shows attract the ‘who’s-who’ of the office and stationery industries and are seen as premier networking platforms for manufacturers and distributors to access key European, Asian and Middle East markets.
Why have you brought Paperworld to the region?
Middle East markets are of key significance in the worldwide paper industry. Recent research reveals that the GCC market for paper products is worth around US$ 700 million, with the UAE accounting for around US$ 400 million and Saudi Arabia another US$ 220 million. By expanding to the Middle East, Paperworld seeks to enable its partners to better access and interact with this growing market.
Is the market for paper products mainly import-driven?
While a large segment of the paper products market is driven by imports and re-exports, at least 30 per cent of the region’s paper products market is manufactured locally.
What are the major product categories represented at Paperworld Middle East?
Paperworld Middle East brings to the Middle East the same product mix that makes the Paperworld brand so popular globally. The main categories represented are: Office Supplies; School Articles; Gift Articles; Greeting Cards/Calendars; Wrapping Material; Office Paper and Films; Household Paper and Films, as well as in the Remax section recycled printer accessories.
Who would form the main target audience for exhibitors at the debut edition?
The exhibition is aimed at a finely-targeted audience. We expect it to attract a range of industry professionals including: wholesalers; distributors; hypermarkets and supermarkets; stationery shops; paper and office suppliers; gift shops; publishers and printers; bookshops; children’s shops; and schools and universities to name a few.
Does the drive for ecologically-friendly paper products affect the industry worldwide?
It is beginning to have more of an influence, yes. There is a marked increase in the demand for paper products from ecologically certified sources that are sustainably managed as well as increased use of recycled paper. According to recent research, demand for sustainable paper is set to increase steadily for the next five years. Currently the global demand for ‘green’ paper is estimated to be around 16.8 million tonnes. This is set to grow at a CAGR of 6.6 per cent to reach 24.8 million tonnes by 2016. There is also a noticeable move by publishing houses to increase the percentage of recycled paper in books and magazines.
How well represented are major manufacturers and suppliers at Paperworld Middle East?
We have managed to gain significant support from the industry. In fact, Paperworld Middle East has tied up with significant international players for the launch event including Pelikan, Lamy, Hallmark, Paxos and Schneider as well as local manufacturer Farook International Stationery,. Additionally, many other leading international and local manufacturers and suppliers will make their presence felt at the show including APP, April Asia (known for their brand PaperOne), Orchid Papers (Fabriano and Fedregoni Papers) Grandluxe, Paper + Design from Germany, Rotomac, Linc Pens, Elkos Pens, Simbalion, Modern Stationery, Al Fahidi, Al Gurg Stationery, Dubai Library Distributors, and many more.
What is your tie-up with Remax all about?
In a move to stress the importance of recycling, Epoc Messe Frankfurt has tied up with Remax – Europe’s largest trade fair for printer accessory recycling – to launch their Middle East edition under the same roof as Paperworld Middle East. This aims to spread the recycling message in the region and to give leading players a foothold into this growing sector. According to reports, the printer-accessory recycling industry has developed into a US$6 to US$8 billion industry. One third of toner cartridge sales worldwide are of remanufactured products and there are a growing number of recycled ink jet sales.
What else is of significance at Paperworld Middle East?
In its debut edition, Paperworld Middle East will feature National Pavilions from all leading stationery exporting countries, including Germany, India, Egypt, Malaysia, Singapore, China and Taiwan who will display a range of innovative products and designs.
What would be the effective reach of Paperworld Middle East?
Based in Dubai, the trade, finance and logistics hub of the Middle East region, Paperworld Middle East will gain access to the fast-developing markets of the wider Middle East, Central Asia, South Asia and North and East Africa.
What were the factors that made you decide to bring Paperworld to the Middle East?
The decision to bring Paperworld to the Middle East was taken after a study of market sentiment as well as the industry’s strong position in the region. In addition, we had gained favourable feedback from regional visitors and exhibitors to the main Paperworld show in Frankfurt. Given that the region constitutes a fast-growing segment of the world market, we thought that it was the ideal time to bring Paperworld here.
How do you expect Paperworld to impact the regional industry?
By bringing world-leading suppliers and manufacturers of paper products in contact with the region’s buyers, decision makers and trade professionals, we hope to be able to develop the market for office and paper products further. The show represents the first foray into this emerging market for many leading brands, it also gives trade professionals from across the wider region a first-hand look at the latest developments and products that are the talking point of the industry worldwide.