ITC connects vietnamese handicraft exporters to international buyers
The International Trade Centre (ITC) is providing Vietnamese home décor and giftware exporters with an opportunity to sell their products to more than 1,000 international buyers. The LifeStyle Viet Nam 2011 trade fair, which is being held 18 – 21 April in Ho Chi Minh City, is expected to attract buyers from Europe, the United States, Japan, China, Australia and elsewhere.
“Vietnamese exporters will be able to connect with new buyers and create new business relations, thereby creating opportunities for thousands of handicraft-producing households, as well as for the farmers who produce the raw materials,” said ITC Executive Director Patricia R. Francis.
The trade fair is organized by Vietcraft, the Viet Nam Handicraft Exporters Association. Vendors will host 800 booths displaying a wide range of handicrafts, furniture and other hand-made home décor.
LifeStyle is being supported by ITC through a rural development programme, run in conjunction with Vietcraft, which targets 4,800 poor households in four Northern Vietnamese provinces.
The programme, ‘Green Production and Trade to Increase Income and Employment Opportunities for the Rural Poor,’ is creating pro-poor and environmentally-sustainable green value chains that will enable producers to raise the quality of their goods and improve their links with more profitable markets. A number of United Nations organizations are involved, with ITC acting as lead agency.
The programme is financed by the Spanish MDG Fund and will particularly benefit women, who are traditionally more involved in craft production.
The Vietnamese handicrafts sector is mainly export-oriented and is internationally recognized as one of the most competitive emerging markets for bulk supply. Viet Nam is second only to China as an exporter of home décor items to the European Union.
In order to be able to reach a higher end of the market, many producers need to upgrade their designs, quality and finishing techniques, and be aware of current design and consumer trends. To address this challenge, ITC and Vietcraft provided a team of designers to help some 18 companies develop new “sustainable” product ranges. These new collections will be on display at LifeStyle Viet Nam. ITC is the joint agency of WTO and the UN and is devoted to helping SMEs in developing countries become more competitive in global markets and thus to speed up sustainable economic development and contribute to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals.