Playing significant role in increasing handicrafts exports

The 45th edition of IHGF Delhi Fair Spring 2018 concluded successfully recently at India Expo Centre & Mart, Greater Noida with business enquiries worth Rs. 2,700 cr, said OP Prahladka, Chairman – EPCH. Prahladka further informed that the fair held twice in a year play significant role in increasing exports of handicrafts from the country. The handicrafts exports during 1994-95 when the fair initiated was Rs. 3,159.62 cr has reached to the tune of Rs. 24,392.39 cr in 2016-17. Export trade has widened its scope and reach.

5,300 overseas buyers from 111 countries and domestic volume retail buyers visited the show to source home, lifestyle, fashion and textiles products during five days extravaganza.Prestigious Ajay Shankar Memorial Awards for the best designed and displayed stands were also distributed by Ajay Tamta, Hon’ble Minister of State for Textiles in six product categories such as furniture, furniture hardware and home accessories, fashion jewellery & accessories, lamp lighting and accessories, home, textile, furnishing and floor coverings, Christmas decorative and festive décor, houseware, table, kitchenware and hotelware. Three awards were given in each category i.e. Gold, Silver and Bronze.

Speaking on the occasion the Chief Guest Ajay Tamta, Minister of State for Textile said that EPCH has been doing tremendous efforts for increasing exports of handicrafts from the country firstly by organising this kind of handicrafts fair twice a year and secondly by setting up infrastructures at different craft clusters of the country to provide the product and design development facilities, use of technology to produce products in large quantities and also providing marketing linkages to the artisans and craftspersons.

During last edition of the show held in October, the number of countries from where the buyers visited the show was 102 and this year it has witnessed over 111 countries from where the buyers have visited. The business energy at the fair was stimulating as the buyers were seen negotiating and placing orders in every product category during five days extravaganza.

4,900 overseas buyers including domestic volume retail buyers visited during last edition of Spring 2017 and has healthy increase during this edition with visit of 5,300 overseas buyers supported by domestic trade visitors. The handicrafts exports during the year 2016-17 was Rs. 24,392.39 cr with overall 13.15 per cent increase in comparison to last year. However, the exports of handicrafts during ten months of the current financial year 2017-18 is Rs. 19,862 cr and expected to reach Rs. 23,170 cr only, said Rakesh Kumar. This fair has become a major marketing platform to boost exports of small and medium entrepreneurs of the handicraft sector.

Theme pavilions of NER, Jodhpur and J&K were remained one of the highlights of the fair as exquisite crafts of these States attracted many buyers to visit these theme pavilions. Even though the overseas buyers from 111 countries including Argentina, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Holland, Hong Kong, Italy, Israel, Japan, Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, Oman, Philippines, Poland, Qatar, Romania, Russia, South Africa, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, USA, UAE, UK and Zimbabwe and many more visited the show but maximum buyers from the USA (627), UK (346), Germany (293), Japan (177) Australia (169), France (169), and China (78) came to source their requirement of home, lifestyle, fashion and textiles products.

Rakesh Kumar, ED – EPCH further said that during five days extravaganza knowledge seminars saw large turnout of exhibiting companies as these included different and important subjects like cultural differences between the East and West and How they impact business; How to export to China with specific reference to gifts, decorative and houseware; Symposium on positioning of J&K handicrafts in domestic and overseas markets; Goods and Service tax; Intellectual property rights; Customs Trade Partnership Agreement Terrorism [C-TPAT]; Verification of certified forest products & Trends and Forecast – spring summer 2019.

Visit of buyers from world’s renowned companies/ departmental stores were remained highlighted amongst the exhibiting companies as buyers from these stores were seen placing orders. These included Apropos International Inc., Anthropologie, Four Hands LLC, Brylane Home, Earthbound Trading, Cost Plus World Market, Imax Corpn, Kalalou, Roost, Midwest-CBK, Home Essentials & Beyond, Two’s Company, Life Time Brands from USA; Opaxa Living UG, OTTO, Lambert GMBH, Wool Worth from Germany, Argos, Graham & Green, Habitat from UK Barron Imports, New Zealand, Caravane France, El Corte Ingles SA, Spain, Globus Switzerland, Interstil, Norway, House Doctor and Bloomingville, Denmark, Lifestyle and Redtag from UAE, Lydia Collection, Korea, ToK&Stok, Brazil, Moe’s Home Collection, Canada, Pomax, Belgium, The Moshi, Sweden, Top Ten Ltd Israel, Fashion Interior Manufacturing Inc. from Philippines and Marker Home Chain store from Chine.

A record number of domestic volume retail buyers sourced the home, lifestyle, furniture products from the show witnessing the growing demand in the domestic market. The major Indian Retail/online brands Amazon, Furniture Walla, Pepperfry, Urban ladder, Good Earth, Archies, Fabindia, Oberoi hotels, Park Plaza Hotel, Flipkart, Accenture, H&M, e-bay, Zorba, The Wishing Chair, Chumbak etc. visited the show and placed orders. This became one of the motivating factors for those exhibitors who had shown their interest for retail sale during the show.

Trends and Forecast of Autumn/Winter & Spring / Summer 2019

The fair wooed buyers from around the world with huge collection of 2,000 handicrafts products across 14 product categories manufactured by Indian exhibitors.Several seminars were conducted during the event where experts from different fields and subjects were invited to upgrade the knowledge of the participating exhibitors. One of the most important seminar held on 4th day of the event was on Trends and Forecast of Autumn/Winter & Spring/Summer 2019 in which PJ Arandor, Fillipino International Lifestyle Designer apprised the participating companies to manufacture their products as per upcoming trends during 2019 so that that attention of buyers can be attained during participation in forthcoming international and domestic fairs. The seminar focused on the tendencies for the coming season in key colours, core directions, essential moods, relevant materials, dominant patterns and significant images for 2019, said Rakesh Kumar, ED – EPCH.

Kumar further elaborated that the fair also provides an opportunity to the exhibiters to promote their products through the fashion shows. On 4th day, the fashion show showcased Jewellery, Fashion Accessories and Artisanal Apparel provided by the exhibitors such Handicraft and Handloom of Odisa, R.Co. Arts Emporium, Maharaja Crafts, Kohli Overseas Trading Co. and M. A. Internationals.

While awarding the guild certified framers, Hon’ble MSME Minister appreciated the efforts and vision of Rakesh Kumar and said that he has both emotion and devotion which have strengthened the handicrafts sector. Giriraj Singh ji also lauded EPCH’s efforts towards creating marketing platform in the form of IHGF-Delhi fair wherein exhibitors from across the country are showcasing their products to the visiting buyers from all over the world. He also acknowledged the role of 70 lakhs artisans who are backbone of the handicrafts sector and are engaged in production of handicrafts and commended EPCH for giving them the opportunity to display their intricate craftsmanship in this show as well.

Giriraj Singh gave away guild certificates to professionals

Giriraj Singh, Hon’ble Union Minister [I/C] gave away the Guild certificates to 12 framers working in Picture Framing Segment. OP Prahladka, Chairman – EPCH, Radhey Shyam Ranga, President of the fair, RK Passi and Sagar Mehta, Vice Chairmen- EPCH and Rakesh Kumar, Executive Director – EPCH were present on the occasion.

Keeping in view the vision of EPCH, the Hon’ble Minister expected that the exports of handicrafts would cross `30,000 cr very soon. The MSME Minister also elaborated that he has introduced technology in spinning and hoped it will create employment of 5 cr people in the MSME sector. All products range in informal sector are under MSME and such it is an employment generative sector.

Rakesh Kumar, Executive Director informed that EPCH in collaboration with Lion India has taken unique initiative to upgrade the Picture Framing Industry in India by conducting l GCF training programme for the Indian Framers in association of Fine Art Trade Guild, London, UK to enable the framers in acquiring higher skills and quality of workmanship and accommodate different levels of framing with the bespoke market to international standards.

The training programme was held from 6 to 12 November, 2017 in Kolkata. 20 participants from all over India, came to Kolkata to participate in the above course and appeared and among them 12 participants have passed the Guild Certified Framers examination successfully. They included Deepak Oulkar from Belgaum, Punit Prahladka from Kolkata, Dipak Dholey from Kolkata, Sanjay Lahoti from Pune, Geovanni Fernandes from Margao, Goa, Liza Mayan from Kannur, Kerala, Aliasgar Kanchwala, Hyderabad, K Narendra Shenoy from Mangalore, Mia Renny from Cochin, Manisha Bhatcar from Panjim, Goa.

Kumar further said that this kind of course is held first time in India and Mohd. Asif from Export Promotion Council for Handicrafts was one of 12 participants who passed the examination successfully and was awarded the Guild Certificate.Fashion shows were the highlight of 2nd second day and models displayed fashion jewellery and accessories from Kenway Sartaj Worldwide, Asian Handicrafts, Veva Fashion, Gramin and Vikas Chetna Sansthan and many more.