Middle East Fragrance Summit 2012 Starts Today
Ahmed Butti Ahmed: Retail industry accounts for around 40% of Dubai GDP
Dubai: The Middle East Fragrance Summit 2012, organized by the Fragrance Foundation Arabia “FFA” and lasted for two days at The Ritz Carlton - DIFC in Dubai, today concluded its activities.
A large number of local and leading top key global players of fragrance manufacturers and retailers participated in this outstanding event. The participants discussed the fragrance industry and trade issues in the Middle East and how to enhance local and foreign investment in this field as well as finding different ways to fight counterfeit fragrances in the UAE.
H.E. Ahmed Butti Ahmed, Executive Chairman of Ports, Customs and Free Zone Corporation, Dubai Customs Director General, said in the introductory speech of the summit: “Retail industry accounts for around 40% of Dubai GDP.” He also added that the average of annual expenditure of the individual on fragrance in the UAE is $380.
Butti pointed out that the UAE is an attractive platform for all investors in various fields, stressing that fragrance sector is one of the most vital sectors in the UAE. He said: “This huge growing sector requires us not to spare any effort to fight counterfeiting and cheating of global brands. The UAE deals with counterfeiting and protection of Intellectual Property Rights seriously and enacted strict laws against any company breaching these rights.”
On his part, Mr. Shahzad Haider, Chairman of FFA, said: “This year Summit has witnessed a quantum leap at the various levels of foreign participation and concerted efforts between the FFA and government organizations with a view to enhancing the position of fragrance sector and fight counterfeit products.”
“FFA’s initiatives have introduced an outstanding progress in developing this sector through joint and fruitful cooperation between the FFA and its members including fragrance manufacturers and retailers from all over the world.” added Haider
Mark Lockyer, Managing Director of Sampling Innovations – UK, started the first session of the second day of the Summit and he spoke about the innovative ways of the retail industry. This was followed by a session on consumer trends managed by Adel Basel, Director Retail of Nielsen Company –MENA.
Sarmad Manto, Attorney at law – IP laws, spoke about the Intellectual Property Rights and fighting counterfeit products, while Abdul Wahab Al Hawaj, Director of Al Hawaj and Sons – Bahrain, talked about fragrance retail and local fragrance market and the competition with global fragrance.
Prior to event conclusion, the FFA held a panel discussion on consumer trends in which a number of outstanding figures participated including Adel Bassel and Ehab Ezzat, manager of Arabian Oud Co., and Philip Tarassouff, director general of L’Orial Middle East.
At the end of the Summit, local and global fragrance companies gave special training for the inspectors of Dubai Economic Development Department to help them identify the basic differences between original and counterfeit fragrance products to enable them to implement the laws of consumer protection.