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25th World Apparel Convention - great success!
Dec '09
The International Apparel Federation (IAF) held its 25th World Apparel Convention on November 19th and 20th in cooperation with The Clothing Manufacturers Association of India (CMAI).

The event was attended by more than 250 manufacturers, retailers, suppliers, educational experts and press representing twenty countries attended the Convention and focused on the theme “the future of fashion through consolidation and collaboration”.

The conference was opened by the Union Minister of Textiles, Mr.Dayanidhi Maran, and the State Minister of Commerce and Industry, Mr Jyotiraditya Scindia. They highlighted the potential of the Indian textile and clothing industry both as partners to develop the domestic market, currently at 44 billion USD with an annual growth of 14%, and as a sourcing destination. Indian textile-clothing exports currently stand at 22 billion USD but, according the ministers, are expected to grow to more than 100 Billion USD in the next twenty five years.

In his opening speech IAF President Vassilis Masselos stressed the importance of India's heritage and culture as a source of fashion inspiration and shared with the audience successful cases of Indian designers abroad. The first session focused on vertical integration with stimulating presentations by Kishore Biyani (Group Chief Executive, Future Group), Tim Wheeler(President, International Division, Jockey International Inc), Bjorn Palmquist (Country Head, H&M), Atul Ujagar (Country Director, Nike Inc) and Arun Srideshmukh (CEO, Reliance Trends).

During this two-day conference leading speakers from the clothing industry, key retailers as well as academics highlighted the potential of India both in terms of sourcing and marketing. India is a very large country with diverse consumer tastes and international apparel brands should adapt to its unique cultural aspects. As the environment is become a key issue fashion is not only about creativity but also about sustainability. In a very interesting panel discussion on corporate and environmental responsibility there was a lively debate among the speakers including Mrs Caterina Conti from Anvil Knitwear, Mr. Steve Jesseph, the chairman of WRAP, Mr. Robin Anson from Textiles Intelligence and Mr. Peter Ackroyd of UKFT.

The convention included the IAF International Designer Award Show which opened with the presentation of the designs of the winners of 2008 competition: Catta Donkersloot (Netherlands), Frans Baviera (Spain) and Anuj Sharma (India). The winners of 2009 in Delhi were respectively Didier van der Vorst (Belgium) for the most creative design, Anne Schulze (Germany) for the most commercial design and Jasper Huang (Taiwan) for the best way of working with fabric. Didier van der Vorst will be invited to present her work at the 26th IAF World Apparel Convention to be held on October 7-8 2010 in Hong Kong.

International Apparel Federation (IAF)

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