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ITALIAN SHOES AND FASHION PRODUCTS: AN APPOINTMENT WITH THE RISING SUN
Beautiful, superbly-made shoes, gorgeous bags and elegant belts suitable for any occasion: these are examples of the items in the upcoming collections soon to be given a preview showing to the general public. All the elegance and refinement of Italy will be showcased in at two autonomous exhibitions (“Shoes From Italy” and “Moda Italia”) taking place in Tokyo from July 5th to 7th. These are events of high sophistication, being held simultaneously to present the complete range of Italian fashion and recommend it to the Japanese consumer market, the main outlet for exports in the Far East. This is an unmissable opportunity, both for confirming the leadership positions of established companies and for presenting so-called “newcomers”, who can be helped to enter the market by setting up trade negotiations in advance.
It is also a way to lend continuity to promotional activities in the Japanese market, even though markets suffered a contraction during 2009 due to the economic crisis. This problem has particular relevance for the leather goods sector, and efforts will be made to address it by focusing attention on high and medium-high quality Italian products. As in previous years, only a few exhibitors will be contributing, rigorously selected from among the very best.
At the February 2010 edition of “Shoes from Italy”, there were 24 companies exhibiting, with visitor numbers totalling 1,838. Of the 24 firms, 33% were newcomers to the Japanese market, carefully selected from among all those who applied. On the other hand, 62 companies participated in the clothing sector, offering products and fashion items in line with current trends. This time the same will occur: the shoes on display will arrive in Japan even before they are showcased at Micam in Milan. The accessories and leather goods will be so attractive and so beautifully made that they will prove irresistible to visitors. The clothes on show will combine practicality and good taste in just the right mixture.
The display by the Italian companies, in addition to offering a wide range of high quality goods, can provide something for every member of the family. Fashion for women, men and children will be on show, as well as underwear and swim-wear. There will also be contributions from companies operating in certain specialist sectors, like wedding dresses: although these are niche markets, they are nevertheless extremely important. Italy ranks second only to China in terms of fashion exports. In 2009, the industry suffered the backlash of the world economic crisis, which caused a fall in exports (amounting to just under 22 billion Euros, down 19.7% on the previous year). Imports were also hit (down 11%). The first three months of 2010, if not marked by recovery, at least showed a return to normality, expected to be given impetus by events like the two separate shows in Tokyo. To extend as far as possible the frontiers of the market, invitations have been extended to well-known buyers from Korea, Taiwan and Singapore.