Korea trade agreements spur Seoul Food & Hotel growth
10 December 2010
With space at Seoul Food & Hotel (SFH) 2011 now available on the waiting list only, the organisers are already looking ahead to 2012, when twice the area will be available to accommodate would-be exhibitors, due to the expansion of the exhibition venue, Kintex.
Reporting on these developments, Allworld Exhibitions’ Paul March commented: “Seoul Food & Hotel is now more than ever a must-attend event for the world’s food and drink exporters, in the light of a continuing raft of international free-trade agreements together with the country’s economic growth rate of 6 per cent a year.“We are delighted with demand for the exhibition, and equally delighted that we shall soon be in a position to increase the space available for all the many other international companies that wish to participate.”
Apart from the booming Korean economy, the world’s food and drink professionals are attracted by the finalisation next year of trade agreements with the EU and USA. These will effectively do away with import duties altogether, transforming market conditions for international traders. The finalisation of the Korea-US free trade agreement means Australia's negotiations with Australia’s third-largest regional trade partner will accelerate; and finalisation of access to the South Korean market is expected to be agreed before the Japan-Australia free trade pact. The Centre for International Economics estimates that an Australia-Korea trade agreement would see Australian agriculture and food exports into the Korean market increase by 53.3% by 2030 (or around $700 million).
Many international groups exhibiting in 2011 have already taken increased stand space, led by Australia with twice its previous allocation as it celebrates 50 years of formal diplomatic ties with South Korea. Germany, the USA and France have also taken larger stands for 2011, and they are joined by displays from many other countries: China, Spain, Canada, Thailand, Cyprus, Mexico, Chile, New Zealand, Italy, Taiwan, Vietnam, Norway, Italy, India, Macao, Turkey, the Philippines, Sri Lanka and Japan.
Korea is the Asia-Pacific region’s largest market for imported food, with a retail sector worth around $55 billion and a wealthy, sophisticated buying public. Importing 75 per cent of its food and agricultural needs, Korea is also a huge market for wines, spirits, food packaging, and hospitality equipment and services.
SFH attracts visitors from Korea and around the world. They include retail, government and hotel & restaurant buyers, as well as importers, wholesalers and manufacturers.
About the organisers
Allworld Exhibitions is Asia’s leading organiser of food and hospitality shows, with 15 such events in the region annually. These events are marked with the famous Apple quality symbol, and include the FHC series in China, FHA in Singapore and HOFEX in Hong Kong, among many others.
In its unique partnership with KOTRA, the Korea Trade Investment Promotion Agency, it has made SFH the undisputed entry point to the Korean food, drink and hospitality market.
The Kintex exhibition complex is one of the newest international facilities in North East Asia. It is close to both Gimpo and Incheon international airports and a short distance from downtown Seoul. It is close to many leading hotels and is within easy reach of the Seoul subway system. It will double its available space by the end of 2011 with completion of its phase 2 development.