The value of retail sales in the UAE is projected to grow by 16.5 per cent in 2010 due to increasing consumer confidence in the market, according to a report by Business Monitor International. Identifying the UAE as an ideal market for the burgeoning footwear manufacturing industry in China, 10 retailers and manufacturers from the leading Asian economy are set to stage an extensive participation at the upcoming ‘Footwear Expo 2009’, which is being held under the auspices of the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry from November 02 - 04, 2009 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Dubai. Organized by Orange Fairs & Events for the second consecutive year, the event will build on the growing consumer confidence in the UAE market amidst the crisis.
In 2008, China has emerged as the largest shoe exporter in the world with an annual output totalling to more than 10 billion pairs, and exports reaching 8.12 billion pairs with a value of USD 28.8 billion. Furthermore, latest reports from China Leather Association revealed that January to July 2009 has seen the country’s turnover from footwear exports hit USD 15.71 billion. Given the Chinese footwear industry’s excellent growth in the previous years, local manufacturers are eager to expand their market to the region, with companies from the influential footwear-manufacturing bases such as Guangzhou, Zhejiang, Jiangsu, Guangdong, Fujian, and Hong Kong set to make a prominent presence at ‘Footwear Expo 2009’.
“The UAE is one of the biggest growing markets at the moment, with everyone from Saudi Arabia to Qatar to Bahrain coming to the emirates to source world-class goods. The volume of potential customers coming to this market is one of the major factors that draw us towards increasing our presence in the UAE, especially with the apparent resilience of the country’s retail sector buffering the market from the impact of the economic slowdown,” said Danny Cheung, Director, Canton Footwear Association (CFA). “Our presence in this event is part of our growth plans for the footwear industry as well as our commitment to enhancing the trade between China and the UAE by introducing our high quality products to the region’s volume buyers.”
A total of 75 global companies from 15 countries, including Vietnam, India, Indonesia, Iran, Pakistan, Philippines, Turkey, Thailand, Malaysia, Portugal, U.S.A., UK and the UAE are set to exhibit their signature products at the ‘Footwear Expo 2009’. The event’s three-day run will witness global manufacturers displaying a wide variety of shoes - from leather, to men's, ladies', children's, sports, casual, specialty and rubber, as well as other kinds of functional footwear such as sandals, slippers and boots.
“In the face of the worldwide economic slowdown, the strength of the UAE retail sector and the continuous activity within the market is appreciated by global footwear manufacturers. We are looking forward to the high impact meeting between regional customers and Chinese manufacturers, which we expect will further boost the business for high quality and affordable footwear products in the UAE. In addition to providing widespread exposure for high quality products products, we are also seeking to provide a platform where buyers from the region can examine samples, negotiate and establish close business relationship with the manufacturers from across the globe,” concluded Nafees Ahmed, Project Manager, Orange Fairs & Events.
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