Organized for the third time by İTKİB Fuarcılık AŞ, a subsidiary of İTKİB, the İstanbul Fashion Connection Apparel & Fashion Exhibition (IFCO) was held on February 8-11. While the Turkish apparel industry mobilized to heal the wounds of the citizens in the earthquake region, it reached a great potential with the IFCO Fair so that production and trade would not stop.
Combining all product groups of the apparel and fashion industry under one roof, IFCO Fair provided a significant added value to the sector's exports with its business volume. IFCO, Europe's largest apparel and fashion fair, hosted the meeting of the big fashion industry in Istanbul. The fair, which also made a name for itself on the international platform, brought together over 588 participants with industry professionals in nine halls on an area of 100 thousand square meters. Welcoming more than 22,500 visitors from 134 countries, the fair hosted purchasing delegations from distant and target countries such as the USA, Germany, UAE, Brazil, South Africa, South Korea, England, Canada, Colombia, Malaysia, Mexico, Panama, Chile, and Thailand. Bilateral business meetings were held between the participating companies. Women's, men's, and children's apparel, denim and sportswear, evening dresses, wedding dresses, groom suits, underwear, socks, leather and fur garments, shoes, and saddlery product groups were presented at the fair.
Turkish Exporters Assembly (TIM) and İstanbul Apperal Exporters’ Associasion (İHKİB) President Mustafa Gültepe reminded that the whole country is in mourning due to the earthquake disaster in his fair evaluation. Wishing God's mercy to those who lost their lives in the earthquake and a speedy recovery to the injured, Gültepe continued: "Our pain is great. To heal the wounds of this great disaster, which is rarely seen in history, as a state and nation, we must join hands, unite and cooperate. Our export family became one heart for our earthquake survivors who were left homeless in winter conditions. Under the leadership of TİM, 61 exporters' associations started a mobilization for cash aid and in kind for the earthquake victims. Our teams are working hard to deliver aid materials from our exporters to those in need as soon as possible. Our minds and hearts are in the earthquake zone. It is challenging to organize a fair in such a period. However, the stronger we are economically, the faster we can repair the destruction caused by the earthquake. I think we need to activate the potential of the sectors in which we are strong, especially in global markets. Our apparel industry is critical for our country's economy, with its value-added production, employment, and exports exceeding 21 billion dollars. The sector employs nearly 750 thousand people and brings in foreign currency of 18-19 billion dollars to our country every year. We want to use the leverage effect of IFCO at the maximum level to reach the export of 40 billion dollars that we target for this sector.”
“Buyers came from America, Australia, Europe, and Africa”
İstanbul Apperal Exporters’ Associasion (İHKİB)Vice President Mustafa Paşahan said that they had to work harder than ever to heal the wounds of the earthquake. Emphasizing that they did not cancel the fair, Paşahan said, “In the 100th anniversary of our Republic, we are organizing IFCO on an area of 100 thousand square meters with the participation of more than 600 companies. Buyers from five continents, from America to Australia, Europe to Africa, came to Istanbul for IFCO. We have visitors from over 100 countries. We expect about 30 thousand people to visit our fair, the largest in Europe in its field. In our third fair, we created “The Core Istanbul”, “brands” and “sourcing” areas for the first time. In these areas, we will bring our designers and organized retail brands together with the visitors.”