Packaging industry congregates at international trade fair
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The Gulf's largest packaging trade fair, set to take place next week between 11 – 14 December in Dubai, is billed as a sell-out by the organisers. With over 300 exhibitors on show from more than 40 countries, this year's Gulf Pack exhibition has grown by 26% in a little over a year.
With 83% of exhibitors taking part from outside of the UAE, European suppliers have shown the largest increase along with many first time exhibitors from countries like Saudi Arabia, Canada, China, Croatia, Indonesia, South Korea Germany, Spain, Turkey, Taiwan, the US and UK.
According to Sharla Hancock, Gulf Pack's Project Manager, the reason for the success is the highly dynamic market. “Global growth stands at about 4% annually with a total value exceeding US$485 Billion. But the Middle Eastern markets are far more dynamic than this with double if not treble digit growth in certain categories.”
Gulf Pack's organisers have already given advance warning of substantial business announcements at the event, including breaking news from Crown. With facilities across the region, Crown's global top management will be on hand to confirm a massive new deal.
Crown's Dubai-based General Manager, Francois Querrioux, said that “the region is one of the fastest growing for our company, and through recent investments in Saudi Arabia, UAE, Jordan and Tunisia we have doubled our business in the last three years to meet the continuing market growth.”
In order to provide more accurate statistics about the industry, Gulf Pack has led the initiative to produce the first consumer packaging survey for the UAE. Undertaken by specialist management consultants, IMES, the findings of the report will be first published during this year's Gulf Pack seminar programme on 12 December.
The study tackles packaging from two separate perspectives. Firstly, it looks at how different consumer products are being packed, with a focus on grocery items ranging from milk to biscuits to shampoo. Secondly, it considers how primary packaging materials are mostly being used: flexible, metal, glass, plastic and laminated carton packs are all covered. Among issues considered are the size of the market, demand and sourcing patterns, and projected developments.
Hancock says that “more frequent and extensive research is clearly necessary across the region, but our survey is an excellent start. We hope it will provide a focus for the region's packaging association and serve as a catalyst for more research around the Middle East.”
Other aspects of the workshop and seminar programme include a two-part presentation by Tetra Pak, the global leader in liquid food packaging solutions. These will be open to all trade visitors who can register on line at Gulf Pack's website, www.gulfpack.info.
With only days to go before Gulf Pack, the organisers encourage early pre-registration to avoid queues. The show is open daily from 11am till 8pm and is taking place in the East Hall of Dubai's Airport Expo.
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