24.Marble-International Natural Stone and Technologies Fair where natural stone sector around the world met has grown this year in all areas. Happening at Fuarizmir in an exhibition space for 150 thousand squaremeters, there were 63 thousand 314 visitors in the fair, in which natural stone agreements costing million dollars were made by 1160 participants.
Buyers and sellers who made agreements costing million dollars were happy about 24. Marble-International Natural Stone and Technologies Fair in which natural stone sector around the world met on March, 28-31.
The sector is waiting for 25.Marble.
Being the greatest specialized fair in Turkey and the third greatest fair around the world in its area, MARBLE-International Natural Stone and Technologies Fair hosted the sector in Fuarizmir on March 28-31 by using the slogan ‘Experience the natural stone in its source.’ While the fair was organized in the area of 139 thousand square meters in 2017, this year it was organized in the area of 150 thousand square meters. Total booth area increased from 54 thousand square meters to 57 thousand 51 square meters. Compared to the last year, number of participants increased from 213 to 220 and number of local firms increased from 896 to 923. The number of participants, which was 1109 in 23.MARBLE increased 1160 in total. There were 63.314 visitors in total (53.524 of them were domestic). Both participants and visitors were satisfied with the MARBLE Fair where new natural stone samples were presented and state of the art marble machines and machinery consumables met sector representatives. Sector representatives said that export oriented sales and deals were made.
Türk: “25. year of the MARBLE will be more magnificent.”
Raif Türk, President of Turkish Marble, Natural Stone and Machinery Manufacturers Association (TÜMMER), said that “I’ve been joining MARBLE for 22 years. I can say that it is the best fair up until now. Starting 24 years ago, the adventure came to these days through great accumulation and experience. There is no marble producer who does not know or does not understand the importance of this fair. 25. year of the MARBLE will be more magnificent; we will set the bar much higher.” Stating that they predict that export will increase by 400 million dollars, Türk emphasized that thanks to MARBLE natural stone sector has grown and developed even more.
Kaya: “All the blocks I brought were sold.”
Stating that there was a solemn density in the 24. Fair, Mevlüt Kaya, President of Aegean Mineral Exporters’ Association, said that “We’ve been participating into domestic and foreign fairs for years. The first and the forth days are the days which none of the fair participant has expectation. There was an enormous density of the visitors on the first day of 24. MARBLE, it was awesome. It both astonished and gratified us. The density continued during the following days. I brought 8 blocks to the fair, all 8 were sold. Almost all of the blocks are branded. It is the thing that carries MARBLE Fair a step further. Not only exhibitions are made, but also trade is done. It is a place where not only machined goods are sold, but also blocks are substantially sold. In the 25. Year, we must set the bar higher seriously. And I believe that we could do so.”
It has expanded in all areas
While in 2017 986 blocks were exhibited in MARBLE, this year the highest amount of block in the history of the fair has reached by 428 blocks. Also, by 45% increase, block exhibition area increased from 5 thousand 169 square meters to 7 thousand 500 square meters compared to last year.
It became an international market
Foreign visitor and participants coming from all corners of the world met in Fuarizmir, the center of natural stone. While the fair hosted 213 foreign participants from 30 countries, this year for the first time, the fair hosted national participants. With the national participations of Afghanistan, China, India, Iran and Brazil, the amount of the foreign participants coming from 33 countries in total in order to trade reached 246. China, India, England, Germany, France and Saudi Arabia participated into the “Procurement Committee” program that is organized throughout the fair by the cooperation of Aegean Exporters’ Association and IZFAŞ, under the coordinatorship of Ministry of Economy. Apart from program, with 9790 foreign buyers and visitors in total coming from 123 different countries from America, Asia, Europe and Africa, the fair has become an international market.
A contribution to the urban economy
The activity in the city that began before the fair continued during MARBLE, which takes 4 days, as well. Both domestic and foreign visitors and participants made reservations days before the fair. Occupancy rate of almost all of the hotels reached maximum levels during the fair. Along with accommodation sector, the activity in especially restaurants and transportation satisfied service sector in the city.
The quality of natural stone reflected on machinery sector.
In the Fair, there was also an intense interest towards machinery section where the technology of the entire process from the extraction of natural stone to the end user was exhibited. Stating that quality of natural stone processing made development available to machinery sector, S. Zafer Udül, President of Association of Natural Stone Machinery and Technology, said that “Turkey is in a position of not buying but producing technology. With the machinery we’ve been producing lately, we frightened many foreign brands. Italian machinery is selling a product for 125 thousand Euros now, 5 years ago it was for 200 thousand Euros. From now on, there is a competitive environment. What we need is to brand in machinery just as we’ve done in natural stone. This fair showed us that we are on the right track.”
“MARBLE has proven itself”
Commentating on MARBLE which is a global brand and a window to the world in Izmir, Ali Şayakçı, President of World Natural Stone Association (WONASA), said that “MARBLE – International Natural Stone and Technologies Fair is an advanced fair that has proven itself in international platform of the sector completely. If we accept Verona Marmomacc Fair which is led by historic leadership of Italy in marble cutting as the first determinant fair in the world, with its trenchancy in dimensional products, MARBLE Fair is the second fair in the world along with Xiamen International Marble Fair organized in China.
“Izmir Marble is much more preferred.”
Şayakçı stated that usage of natural stone is increasingly continuing in China, India and some other Far East countries, on the other hand, usage of natural stones, especially granite, is decreasing around the world. Şayakçı said that “The most important reason for this is quartz and then ceramic, porcelain technology which provides great format and duplicating. Nevertheless, Izmir Marble Fair continues to grow and become more popular around the world. Producers from different countries prefer Izmir to find new markets.”