DTI urges furniture makers to join int’l design events
Louella Desiderio (The Philippine Star) - April 28, 2014 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is exerting effort to strengthen the country’s position as a supplier of innovative furniture products in the Southeast Asian region by encouraging the participation of local players in international design events.

“We are continuously advancing Philippine design for the thriving ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) market not just through our signature design event, the Manila FAME, but also by participating in prominent events in the region like the Maison&Objet Asia,” Trade Undersecretary Ponciano Manalo Jr. said.

Maison&Objet Asia is the first Asian edition of the Paris-based
Maison&Objet, regarded as one of the world’s most significant events for interior design and decoration.

The event provides a unique opportunity to gain an overview of industry trends.

“With a select group of seven companies representing Design
Philippines in the recent Maison&Objet Asia in Singapore, we were able to showcase Filipino creativity and craftsmanship in furniture, and project the country as a reliable sourcing partner of designer products and services in Asia,” Manalo said.

The Philippine delegation was led by the world-renowned industrial designer Kenneth Cobonpue, the first to receive the Maison&Objet Asia Designer of the Year award.

Other members of the Philippine delegation were Cebu Fil Veneer Corp., Domicillo by Peter and Paul, Inc., Industria Home Vico Manufacturing Corp., Ito Kish, Schema, and P&B Valises et Compagnie Inc.
The Philippine participation to the event was facilitated by the Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM), an attached agency of the DTI.

“We have come a long way since April 2013 when we launched Design Philippines as a branding initiative that positions the Philippines as a sourcing destination for finely crafted products for the world market,” Manalo said.

Design Philippines aims to promote and nurture the creativity and originality of a globally competitive and passionate community of Filipino designers and craftsmen.

“Maison without the Philippines is not a Maison,” Frederic Bougeard, business development director of Maison&Objet Asia and Paris for the show organizer Salons Francais et International said.
The Chamber of Furniture Industries of the Philippines (CFIP) aims to make the country the global design hub by 2030 and the number one furniture and furnishings exporter in the Southeast Asian region under its industry roadmap submitted to the DTI.

CFIP executive director Salvio Valenzuela, Jr. said earlier the local industry intends to achieve the goal by serving the medium to high-end segment of the market.

“We are targeting the medium to high-end segment of the traditional markets such as North America, Europe, Middle East and Japan; (those in) Asia especially Kuala Lumpur, Jakarta, Shanghai, Ho Chi Minh, Bangkok and Singapore; and BRICs (Brazil, Russia, India, China),” he said.

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