The largest leather exhibition moves from Hong Kong to Dubai
Due to Covid-19 and the quarantine policy in Hong Kong, APLF, the world's leading trade fair - recognised by the leather industry, has been moved from Hong Kong to Dubai. It will be held at the Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) from March 30 to April 1, 2022.
When it became clear some six months before APLF was due to be held for the 2022 edition that the Hong Kong authorities had extended Covid-19 restrictions until the end of March, APLF decided to look for an alternative location for the 2022 APLF event. Several alternative cities were considered including Bangkok and Singapore, but the only candidate that met the specific criteria necessary to hold an international event was Dubai, because of its first-class exhibition halls, tourist infrastructure and the geographical advantage for the visit’s fashion buyers and manufacturers from Europe, the Indian subcontinent, Africa and the Middle East.
Halls one to five of the Dubai World Trade Centre will host the event, covering the supply chain of the leather, tanning and fashion manufacturing industry. The three-day exhibition will bring to Dubai more than 460 exhibitors from 30 countries where leather is produced and exported, such as Brazil, Egypt, France, India, Italy, Korea, Pakistan, Spain, Taiwan, Turkey and the USA. 5,000 international travellers are expected to gather in Dubai for the exhibition.
Apart from the exhibitions, industry conferences such as the global footwear executive summit and future trends in a post-Covid leather industry are two major conferences being organised, during which the impact of Covid-19 will be extensively discussed among global industry leaders.
Impact of the pandemic on the leather industry
The global economy has been impacted by the pandemic in the last three years and this includes the leather footwear, leather goods and fashion sectors. Many tanneries and footwear manufacturers have continued operations but at a much lower capacity when compared to pre pandemic levels. Some companies may have even ceased trading, but the full effects are yet to be confirmed.
During the pandemic, many businesses were affected by various lockdowns, so consumers were limited to online retailers such as Amazon, Alibaba and UPS. Therefore, certain industries such as logistics and warehousing benefited from the pandemic. However, the negative impact on manufacturers and raw material suppliers are undisputed and may well be a prolonged recovery from record low levels.
As scientists began to understand more about the pandemic and mass vaccinations became available in 2021, green shoots of the economy became apparent. The trillions of dollars injected into the economy, combined with almost zero interest rates, manifested themselves primarily in asset price inflation. Stock markets, especially in the US, reached levels never seen before and big ticker luxury items such as cars, private jets and yachts all enjoyed the bonanza of the deluge of almost free dollars.
Luxury brands also benefited, increased their prices and the results have been evident from the end of year results, published by leading luxury conglomerates such as LVMH, Kering and Richemont.
During this period, the leather sector started a steady recovery as consumer demand picked up. Sustainability and environmental care, which had become more important in the last decade, took centre stage as leading tanners launched branded sustainable leathers and introduced social responsibility into their corporate business model.
One global factor that is yet to be resolved is the cost of logistics and shipping. Spiraling freight charges are fueling inflation and disrupting supply chains in many industries, and not just in the leather sector.
APLF is recognized as the barometer of the leather industry, and the Dubai edition, the first since 2019, will be the occasion for the national bodies to discuss the price in the post-Covid era.
Register to attend : https://www.aplf.com/aplf22_registration_page/
For more information : https://www.aplf.com/