ACLE + WLC: a unique opportunity for the leather industryAll China Leather Exhibition (08/30 – 09/01) and World Leather Congress (08/29), together in Shanghai, to offer operators the possibility to attend the most important event for the leather industry to be organised in recent times in China.
China, and especially Shanghai, will play host to two important events dedicated to the leather industry: the 20th edition of the All China Leather Exhibition (ACLE), scheduled from 30 August to 1 September 2017, and the third edition of the World Leather Congress (WLC) to be held on 29 August, with ACLE as the founding sponsor, proposing the theme of “The Leather Revolution”.
The close proximity on the calendar of these two events, in fact, represents a unique opportunity for operators coming from the leather sector, insomuch that it has even been mentioned as the most important “dedicated” event to be organised in recent times in China.
From the standpoint of All China Leather, this also represents a confirmation of the Show’s focus on the changes and on-going evolutions taking place in the leather industry, with a reinforcement of its role as a point of reference for international businesses interested in benefitting from the many diversified opportunities offered up by the great Chinese market.
In terms of numbers, the total exhibition area covered will be 92 thousand square meters, divided up into 8 halls in Pudong’s New International Centre. Halls E1 to E3 will be dedicated to international tanneries and suppliers of machinery and chemical products, while Halls E4 to E7 and Hall N5 will be dedicated to domestic Chinese businesses. More than 1,100 exhibitors coming from 36 countries worldwide are expected to participate, with an estimated turnout of 24 thousand visitors.
As in previous years, ACLE will host 20 country-pavilions, representing the leading manufacturing countries in the leather industry, thereby confirming the importance of the event as a key business platform to supplying China with the raw hides and semi-finished leather required by its industry, as well as the chemical products supplied by the world’s leading producers. Accordingly, the entire leather supply chain will once again be the protagonist of All China Leather.
Taking a look at the latest sector data in China, the last report released on the leather industry’s performance in 2016, and published at the beginning of March by the China Leather Industry Association (CLIA) – co-organiser of ACLE together with APLF – demonstrates how the total sales revenue in 2016 rose by 3.2% year-on-year to 212 billion dollars. Overall exports closed at 76.4 billion dollars, down by 11.3% compared with last year, while imports also decreased by 7% year-on-year to 8.9 billion dollars.
Moreover, China needed to import 668,974 tons of semi-finished leather in 2016 worth 1.5 billion dollars. Finished leather imports for the same period were 131,987 tons with a value of 2.1 billion dollars.
Although leather import figures were lower compared to 2015, it is in any case a market offering enormous export opportunities to western tanneries already working with or prospecting new Chinese customers. At the same time, ACLE is also confirmed as the ideal business platform for making contacts with the decision makers from China’s 550 leading tanneries and the footwear factories that – it is important to remember – manufactured 4.6 billion pairs of leather shoes in 2016 (+0.9%).
China, in fact, is going through an important period of transition, which sees the gradual move from manufacturing and exports dominating the economy, with a slowing down of China’s GDP growth from 6.9% in 2015 to 6.8% in 2016, to a more consumer-driven growth, with constantly rising numbers in the ranks of the middle class. Overall consumer spending continues to grow and is extremely buoyant at an annual rate of +10.9%, and this was reflected in terms of the interest in imported footwear in 2016 that increased by 15.9% to reach 112.4 million pairs.
It must also be considered how the slowdown in the Chinese leather sector has been influenced by the ongoing crackdown on polluting industries by authorities, which has led to the closure of many tanneries in the north of the country, while at the same time making Chinese leathers more competitive on the global market.
All these factors will once again hold a place of importance at the next edition of All China Leather, representing – also thanks to the inside look provided by the concurrent World Leather Congress – an essential opportunity for all members of the leather trade to get a complete picture of where the industry is headed in China and in Southeast Asia.