His Excellency Hussain Nasser Lootah.
This is the second consecutive year that Swedish Wood has been there together with representatives from Swedish sawmills. The Middle East and the area around the Gulf are important regions for Swedish wood export and this is a factor of increasing significance which has spurred on participation at the Dubai Wood Show.
"The countries have extensive building programmes and they are very keen to invest, despite political unrest in the region. It is essential that we continually show our presence in this region which is one of the most expansive in the world," says Jan Söderlind, International Director at Swedish Wood.
Jan Söderlind also had the opportunity to talk to His Excellency Hussain Nasser Lootah.
"His Excellency paid a lot of attention to the display of wood in the Swedish pavilion and demonstrated his interest in modern wood building and Swedish wood design."
In recent years, the sale of Swedish sawn wood to the Middle East has changed character. It used to be a market that Swedish sawmills would turn to when sales in Europe were weak but now the Middle East has become a longterm and prioritised market for many Swedish sawmills, where perseverance and longterm relations are becoming more and more important.
"Swedish wood has a good reputation in the region - a reputation that is well deserved. There are two reasons for this: our raw materials are of a high quality and our sawmills have come a long way with product development and logistics," says Jan Söderlind.
Both the trade fair as a whole and Swedish Wood's pavilion had more visitors this year than last year. During the three trade fair days, 14 - 16 April, hundreds of clients from the Middle East, India and Pakistan came to meet the Swedish delegation to discuss business.
"Our aim is to increase the demand for wood in the Middle East even further and to do that, we need to be much more involved in the future developments of the market," says Jan Söderlind. He continues:
"We need to support the development of the market and show our clients and the trade in the Middle East how the use of wood in other countries is changing dramatically." That includes everything from modern highrise buildings to new surface structures for furniture manufacturers.
The Swedish pavilion also displayed an example of Swedish Wood's collaboration with the Faculty of Design and Architecture at the prestigious American University of Dubai, AUD. This cooperation has the form of a design competition on the theme Swedish Wood Meets Arabia, which has resulted in five pieces of unique pine furniture. Some of the winning pieces of furniture were shown in the Swedish pavilion.
For further information:
Jan Söderlind, International Director
+46 (0)70-211 04 22
Camilla Carlsson, Communications Manager
+46 (0)72-702 79 65