Dubai, UAE: Paperworld Middle East 2017, the region’s leading trade fair for stationery and office supplies, opened in Dubai today (14 March), as 313 exhibitors from 42 countries offer up a smorgasbord of school and gift articles, paper, creative materials, and children’s toys and games.
The 7th edition of the three-day event runs until 16th March at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre, and features more exhibitors from more countries than ever before.
The international complement includes six country pavilions from Germany, Italy, China, Taiwan, Egypt, and Pakistan, while 28 UAE companies are also on-board, spearheaded by Farook International Stationery, which exports 10 UAE-made paper and stationery brands to more than 90 countries throughout the world.
Major global players rubbing shoulders on the show floor include paper and pulp producers The Navigator Company from Portugal; American-based Melissa & Doug, one of the world’s largest children’s product manufacturers; and German pen-makers Lamy and Schneider.
All are showcasing their latest innovations to thousands of trade buyers from throughout the Middle East and Africa, as they create awareness of their brands, strengthen distribution networks, source new clients, and network within the industry.
“Shifting tides in international trade and economic uncertainty over the last 12 months has meant manufacturers of stationery, paper, and office items have had to refocus their export outlook,” said Ahmed Pauwels, CEO of Paperworld’s organiser Messe Frankfurt Middle East.
“The good news is that growth in the global market is expected to come from regions such as the Middle East and Africa, where demand for paper, office supplies, remanufactured printer materials, and stationery is estimated to be worth US$12 billion by 2019.
“The consumption of office paper, supplies, school articles, and stationery, is sustained by the strong appreciation for high quality products and brands at Paperworld Middle East, which is further boosted by Dubai’s geographical proximity to regional markets,” Pauwels added.
“The robust presence on the show floor by big international names is matched by start-up businesses testing the regional waters for the first time. This is positive for the industry, where competition breeds innovation, and new ideas and solutions are created based on market needs.”
Paperworld Middle East 2017 has a marked emphasis on sustainability, underlined by the return of the Green Office Area, a dedicated section showcasing the most eco-friendly products available in the market today.
The Navigator Company is among those presenting its latest green paper products, including its Eco-Logical 75g, and Advanced 75g range. António Soares, The Navigator Company’s Marketing Director, said: “These two products of the Navigator range showcase the best of a sustainable approach to office papers.
“Companies all over the world are looking towards more eco-efficient products and services and the economic growth in the Middle East means that such solutions are key, especially considering that all global multinationals are present in this part of the world.”
“By using Navigator Eco-Logical 75g, buyers are promoting sustainable office paper consumption and can give their names to one of the more than 12 million trees we plant every year.”
WZ Eurocopert from Poland is a returning exhibitor at Paperworld Middle East 2017, and will display in the Green Office Area its latest range of eco white paper and manilla envelopes, which come certified by the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC), and the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC).
Wojciech Zukowski, a Member of the Board at WZ Eurocopert, said: “We invested a lot of money in new eco technology, and changed our procedures and the whole company policy to be green. All our raw material suppliers and business partners are only green; they’re certified, and we audit and check regularly that they’re 100 per are eco-friendly.
“All over the world, and in the Middle East too, businesses are taking care of the environments in which they operate, which extends to using simple everyday items such as envelopes. We promote it, and offer better business conditions to everybody who wants follow us by being green,” added Zukowski.
Paperworld Middle East 2017 again has a strong Back-to-School element, with Latvian company AmericanKids, DKT from Portugal, and French manufacturer JRK among the dozens of exhibitors launching new school stationery, supplies and backpacks this week.
Dina Kidalova, CEO of AmericanKids, said: “We have a wide variety of bags equipped with 3D design, glow in the dark fabric, built-in high quality stereo speakers, and packages with auxiliary and Bluetooth headphones.
“Unique design, superior quality and exceptional prices are the standards which set our brands apart, and in the United States, our brands have won product of the year two years in a row. We entered the Middle East market last year and already see huge interest in our products, and we hope to build on this at Paperworld Middle East.”
Also making waves was the first round of Wrap Star, which saw the most talented gift wrapping exponents in Dubai square off against each other in a spirited competition. A series of gifts were beautifully wrapped and presented in a variety of fashions, using paper, ribbons, bows and boxes, all provided by Paperworld Middle East exhibitors. The final will see the best in the field face off on the second day of the show.
Paperworld Middle East is the region’s largest B2B trade show covering the entire range of stationery and office supplies, from school and gift articles, office or household paper, art supplies and creative materials, to toys, party and festival articles, and printers and multimedia. More information is available at: www.paperworldme.com.