The air was heavy with expectation on the opening day of Trä & Teknik, the wood and woodworking fair, at Svenska Mässan in Gothenburg, Sweden. The opening days of trade fairs are always a special time, as the tensions of the intense preparations ease and everyone looks forward to rewarding contact with the visitors. This day was particularly special, however, as the King of Sweden would be opening the fair.
H.M. The King had declared an interest in visiting Trä & Teknikmässan and also agreed to take part in the opening ceremony. It was a busy day at the fair for the King, who has a genuine interest in the climate, the forest and what it can be used for. The main focus of this visit was on learning more about and discussing wood construction. H.M. The King’s visit was inspirational and much appreciated by the exhibitors and participants. Suppliers of wood components and wood construction systems formed a new and important addition to the fair, representing the rapidly growing wood construction industry.
At the time of writing, the results of the general election have just been announced – an election rooted in the major social challenges we are wrestling with. The climate is one of the issues that the summer’s extreme dryness and heat catapulted up the agenda. Integration is also one of the top issues, and one that feeds in to many other key areas, such as building and housing, education and healthcare. It was good to see the relatively high voter turnout, which shows that most of us are serious about democracy and play our part by exercising our right to vote. The parliamentary situation is challenging.
But the realities of life cannot be ignored and the country needs to be piloted forward in a tough world with economic growth in jeopardy. In order to continue creating benefits for society, contributing to a better climate and generating export value, our businesses must be given the conditions to compete on the global stage. The wood industry with which H.M. The King became better acquainted on his visit to Trä & Teknik has both the ability and the will to meet the social challenges relating to the climate, construction and employment. The choice is easy!