APLF Leather Fair in Hong Kong Tackles the Issues

Apr 12, 2013, 03:32 ET from APLF Limited

HONG KONG, April 12, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The Materials, Manufacturing & Technology (MM&T) saw a high quality buyer turnout during its run at the Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Center last March 25 to 27.

(Logo: http://www.prnasia.com/sa/2013/01/02/20130102202751874756-l.jpg )

There were 18,467 buyers in attendance, registering a slight decrease from some countries, as many traditional markets from Europe, North America, even China, are still reeling from the ill effects of the economic crisis. Taking up the slack, however, were new Asian markets including Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Vietnam and India, that are enjoying growth in their GDPs and a surge in consumer spending. Also registering a substantial rise in buyer numbers were Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, Poland and Finland.

There was lot of activities on the floor during the 3 days of the fair, keeping the 1,193 exhibitors from 53 countries and regions busy throughout.  Exhibitor Juri Beloussov of Skivers Hides AS in Estonia said, "Because of the difficult situation in the market, people need to get out to look for opportunities, and maybe better goods with less cost. I don't mind traveling to exhibitions like this, because it gives me a great chance to do business."

There were also "returning" exhibitors like leather chemical innovation giants Stahl and Fenice who, after concentrating their marketing efforts in mainland China, are back in Hong Kong in order to reach potential markets in the rest of Asia.

MM&T, which will celebrate its 30th anniversary in 2014, has become an important forum for the hides and leather sectors to discuss various industry issues and concerns. The rising prices of hides is always a hot topic. Robert Hein of National Beef noted, "The packers and hide traders incur additional costs every year due to government regulations on anything from how meat should be packed to the bugs and pests that have to be controlled." The drought that has hit the US for some time now also has impacted on the number of cattle. Hein added, "The US industry is under pressure and it is not until 2014 to 2015, even 2017, that numbers are expected to be restored."

In China, some 300 small-scale tanners have been forced to shut down in the last year as they have been unable to comply with the government's strict environmental regulations.  Mr. Su Chaoying, chairman of CLIA, remarked, "In the Guangzhou area alone, 120 small tanneries have closed, but their production have been absorbed by operational medium-sized tanneries, so volumes have not seen a major reduction."

Two new activities, Sourcing Luxury and the Leather Forum; "Designing with Leather", met with enthusiastic approval. Sourcing Luxury succeeded in highlighting the growing trend for luxury goods and many visitors lauded the outstanding exhibits. The Leather Forum, on the other hand, exceeded expectations in terms of attendance. Developed for the purpose of introducing leather as a material to designers, topics included leather basics, leather trends, sustainability and innovations. Bigger versions of these two events are expected for MM&T in March 2014.

For more information, please visit www.mmt.aplf.com.

Notes to Editors

About APLF Limited

APLF Ltd is a joint venture between SIC Group and UBM Asia. For over two decades, Hong Kong-based APLF Ltd has been providing the global leather and fashion industries with its most important meeting and trading place.

About SIC Group

SIC Group has been organising international professional events since 1926 for companies working in the leather sector. Its role is to support businesses in their development and offer them work platforms in areas of the world with high potential. With nine shows organised each year, SIC Group and its partners can take advantages of expertise that is unique in the world.

About UBM Asia (www.ubmasia.com)

Owned by UBM plc listed on the London Stock Exchange, UBM Asia operates in 19 market sectors with headquarters in Hong Kong and subsidiary companies across Asia, including UBM China in Shanghai, Hangzhou, Guangzhou and Beijing. We have over 240 products including trade fairs, conferences, trade publications, B2B/B2C portals and virtual event services. As Asia's leading exhibition organiser and the biggest commercial organiser in China, India and Malaysia, we stage the leading events of their kind across the region. Our 200 events, 24 publications and 16 vertical portals serve over 1,000,000 quality exhibitors, visitors, conference delegates, advertisers and subscribers from all over the world with high value face-to-face business-matching events, quality and instant market news and industry trends, and round-the-clock online trading networks and sourcing platforms. We have over 1,100 staff in 21 major cities across Asia, stretching from Japan to Turkey.

About UBM plc (www.ubm.com)

UBM plc is a leading global business media company. We inform markets and bring the world's buyers and sellers together at events, online, in print and provide them with the information they need to do business successfully. Our 6,500 staff in more than 30 countries are organised into specialist teams which serve commercial and professional communities, helping them to do business and their markets to work effectively and efficiently.

For fair details, please contact:

Ms Perrine Ardouin, Event Director
Email: Perrine.Ardouin@ubm.com

For media enquiries, please contact:

Ms Gay Amistoso, Marketing Communications Manager
Email: Gay.Amistoso@ubm.com

Ms Chi-On Kwok, Senior Marketing Communications Executive
Email: Chion.Kwok@ubm.com

APLF Limited
17/F China Resources Building,
26 Harbour Road, Wanchai, Hong Kong
Tel: +852-2827-6211
Fax: +852-2827-7831