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China is new market for Cebu furniture

Ehda Dagooc (The Freeman) - November 26, 2012 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - Cebu-made furniture are expected to gain strong patronage from China following the positive reception of Chinese consumers during the recent Furniture China fair.

European Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines (ECCP-Cebu) executive director Roselu Paloma reported that the Cebuano exporters during the show in September had a successful business-to-business meeting with Chinese buyers.

As part of the ECCP-Cebu’s support to the Cebuano exporters, through the Smart-Cebu program, Paloma hopes that the group will establish a good platform in terms of marketing their products in China, specifically in fixing the language barrier.

Initially, she said the group had inked a partnership deal with the International Hotel Association (IHA) in China to heighten awareness of Cebu’s furniture on the Chinese market.

Early this year, PhilExport-Cebu established a “China Help Desk” for exporters in order to take advantage of  the huge opportunity in China.

 “We are intensifying our efforts to further promote trading with China. We see China now as a big market not as competitor anymore,” said PhilExport-Cebu executive director Fred Escalona.

As China is one of the countries in the world that produces  billionaires, Cebuano exporters should take advantage of this development, specifically that Cebu products like furniture, home decors and furnishings, and fashion accessories are considered as high end and of sophisticated design.

Records show that China’s total consumer purchase of furniture, home decor and housewares in 2010  reached US$10.87 billion, a big jump from US$6.58 billion recorded in 2009.

The total import amount of furniture-home decor housewares in 2010 was  US$3.25 billion from only US$1.94 billion in 2009.

According to Escalona, Cebu is banking on this positive market development in China, and the good reception of the Chinese market both in residential and institutional clients are good indication of penetration to the Chinese market.

Earlier, the Business One GTC, an international buyers purchasing conference organizer in China, headed by Henry Hwang was in Cebu to partner with exporters here through PhilExport to enter the growing Chinese market who are demanding for high quality imported products.

The Philippines’ products according to Hwang is one of the highly regarded products among Chinese consumers specifically in furniture, home furnishing and even fashion jewelry.

Hwang said  Chinese consumers now  prefer to buy “anything-imported” as  they have issues against their locally-made products, such as problems in safety, credibility and quality.  (FREEMAN)

 

AS CHINA BUSINESS ONE CEBU CEBUANO CHINA CHINA HELP DESK CHINESE EUROPEAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE FRED ESCALONA FURNITURE
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