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Fur industry expects a happy year ahead

By Song Jingli (
Updated: 2010-01-14 15:46
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Fur industry expects a happy year ahead

Dana Stein, a US fur garments wholesaler, discusses making a sample of the coat displayed on a mannequin with a fur company's employees at the fur industry fair under way in Beijing.

China's fur industry has recovered from a recession that started in 2006, with business expected to pick up 20 percent this year, Wang Ye, secretary of the China Fur and Leather Products Fair, said at the fair's 36th annual meeting in Beijing on Wednesday.

Wang said the fur industry slumped in 1998 and turned upward in 2000, but fell into a recession in 2006. However, the industry has fared well since late 2009, partly because of the earlier arrival of winter, he said, adding that this trend will continue in 2010.

He said that although he was not able to provide solid data because the fur industry in China is relatively small, he can feel the optimism among participants at this year's fair, compared with previous meetings.

The Guangdong Leather Association sent a delegation to the fair to buy raw materials and found prices had increased 30 percent to 40 percent in general, one of the delegation's leaders, Liu Weidong, said.

Fur industry expects a happy year ahead

Wang said raw material price increases were spurred by sales increases of end products. He added that although end products have not yet risen in price, they definitely will later.

Feng Chunhai, general manager of China Fur and Leather Garments City in Yuyao, Zhejiang, said fur garments were affordable to the general public in 2009. He said high-end fur products took a smaller share of the products sold.

Wang said huge decreases in overseas sales can be offset by increases in domestic sales. However, companies exhibiting their products at the fair differed in their strategies for the domestic market.

A receptionist for Zhejiang-based Tongxiang Gusi Fur Fashion Co told that the company began exploring the domestic market in late 2008.

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A receptionist for Hebei-based Zhangjiakou Huayi Fur Co said his company had a booth at Yabaolu Road in Beijing, but added that sales were not satisfactory and the company had no intention to establish other sales booths in China.

Tongxiang Yuhang Fur Products Co representatives said the company's export business was satisfactory, and they had no need to explore the domestic market.

Dana Stein, a fur garments wholesaler from the United States, discussed the design and prices of several coats with the company for about half an hour. Stein told that she would come back later to order 50 different styles of samples at the fair.

The 36th China Fur and Leather Products Fair opened on Tuesday and will be under way until Friday. This year's fair boasts an exhibition area 28,000 sq m in size at the China National Conference Center, near the Bird's Nest, China's national stadium.

Fur industry expects a happy year ahead