ISLAMABAD, Nov.23 (DNA): Pakistani furniture has great potential in Chinese market, said Mian Kashif Ashfaq, Chairman of Pakistan Furniture Council(PFC), according to Gwadar Pro.
Pakistan has good quality wood furniture, and as China’s economy has grown much, it can be a good market for Pakistan, he said adding mostly there’s handmade solid wood furniture in Pakistan, but slowly local manufacturers started working on modeled furniture on machines, as they can’t meet the increasing demand of the world. Therefore Pakistan’s furniture has mostly targeted the local market.
To increase export, he said that through single country’s exhibition, they can portray manufactures and furniture can be marketed in the world as well. As far as China is concerned, “China is a big market for us.
To have an exhibition in China will lead us to have access to the whole world,”he said. In recent years, Pakistani furniture has been shown in Canton Fair and CIIE, which attracted large attention.
“We have gathered the locals, retailers, designers and we have arranged 11 exhibitions for them. We will now take them to China, the Middle East, the UK, and many other countries that have demand,” he said.
He further said PFC will work on e-commerce to expand the export. He said that in the first phase PFC is creating an online sales portal, and all Pakistani furniture manufacturers that have the capacity and capability will be a part of that portal.
“We are trying to have all of them on that portal. In phase one, we will provide home delivery service to all, regardless of the place from where the order is placed. All the manufactures will be linked to buyers through that,” he said, adding that the work has already been started.
“Through this, we will market our product in the future in the whole world and to China as well,” the Chairman said.
There’s also a vast scope of investment in the furniture industry. As many different special economic zones have been established in Pakistan, Chinese investors have huge benefits in it. He mentioned the first-ever state-of-the-art Furniture City established in Allama Iqbal Industrial City under CPEC.
“There are many benefits like tax holidays, relaxation in duties and they can sell their products here and in the world as well. Labor is cheaper here. Raw material is available at a lower price as compared to China,” he said.
Besides, the industry is trying to upgrade furniture designs. Pakistan Institute of Fashion and Design, one of the best institutes in Pakistan, now has a separate department of furniture designing. “It is very encouraging,” said Mian Kashif Ashfaq, adding that now foreign qualified tutors are there to train students and 50 to 60 students are passing that degree program in furniture designing per year.