We're all wrapped up here on day two of Leatherworld Middle East in Dubai and the pace has picked up according to some of the international and local tanneries, designers, suppliers and manufacturers assembled here.
Among the 70 exhibitors from 16 countries looking to gain market share of Middle East and North Africa's (MENA) US$4.6 billion leather market is LWME founding sponsor Al Khaznah Tannery. Taking centre stage here, Al Khaznah, based in Abu Dhabi, is the region's only tannery that specialises in completely biodegradable camel hide. Operations manager Andreas Lehne said that while overall the market remains down, the second day showed reasons to be optimistic, while at the same time remaining realistic until orders are placed for the new sandal lines.
Perception of positive growth can provide a good spark to rebound, but time will tell, especially while China remains tight-fisted, sending reverberations across other markerts.
Meanwhile, Italian giant Dani also had a better second day after expressing scepticism yesterday. The local sandal market remains strong for them and furniture is also a focus, but cash flow in the region remains a problem.
Stay tuned for more from Dubai as day three unfolds.