Moving toward ITMA 2011

Interview with Carmina Castella – Managing Director of AMTEX, Spain

Spanish sector is formed only by 86 companies; we have companies in all the Textile subsectors: Spinning, Weaving, Knitting, Finishing and Dressmaking.Even the sector is formed by small and medium companies;

spanish sector is formed only by 86 companies; we have companies in all the Textile subsectors: Spinning, Weaving, Knitting, Finishing and Dressmaking.Even the sector is formed by small and medium companies; the Spanish textile machinery manufacturers have reached a leading position on the world market. The Spanish companies and their technology are synonymous of TRADITION, INNOVATION, TECHNOLOGY, FLEXIBILITY AND RELIABILITY.
Spanish firms surviving to the crisis have made their best by turning their small dimensions into a competitive advantage. Spanish industry works with zero stock and our great mainstay is our capacity to manufacture custom-made machinery.

In 2007 Spanish exports accounted for 70% of total sales, making the sector`s exports highly significant. This export ratio has remained constant in recent years, and is not based on a temporary strategy but demonstrates the sector`s long-term commitment to selling abroad, ranking it eleventh in the world in terms of exports.

The top five destinations for Spanish exports in 2007 were France, Turkey, USA, India and Mexico. The EU is recognised as the principal destination for Spanish exports in 2006, 38% of Spanish textile machinery was exported to Europe, 21% to Latin America, 18% to Asia.

Kohan Journal. How is the current situation of Spain`s textile industry?

Textile is an important part of the Spanish industry as it employs 206.000 people, representing the 7 % of the industrial employment. The contribution to the industrial product is 5 Billion Euros (4% of the total).
In 2006, total exports reached 7.3 Billion (60% of the production). In the EU, Spanish Textiles represent one tenth of the total production, occupying the fifth position after German, Italy, United Kingdom and France. 2/3 of the Spanish exports are sent to the EU, although sales to North America, North Africa, Near East and Latin America are significant.
The products which are mainly exported are garments and fabrics. Spanish textiles are to be found in more than 150 countries all over the world and Spanish firms are present in the most fashionable International fairs.

Kohan Journal. Considering the stagnation of Spain`s textile industry in recent years, which way will be its direction in upcoming years. Will its activity continue only in some fields of textile industry?

The Spanish textile machinery manufacturers are looking for their own opportunity in this global world, mainly taking into consideration two key factors:

1st) Adaptation, innovation, specialization, quality and flexibility could define the transformation process of the Spanish textile machinery sector. Diversification towards agro-industry (meshes or packaging for fruits and sausages), health (bandages or surgical fabrics), aeronautics (works with fibreglass) and environment are some of the sectors chosen by Spanish textile machinery sector and they define the current option of Spanish companies in order to gain competitiveness.

Textile Machinery sector relies on R+D+I, and 85 % of companies are developing projects. We must take advantage of the fact that Spain possesses Technological Centres and Universities specialising in the different textile sub-sectors and of acknowledged international prestige, and more and more companies seek the support of these centres for development of new equipment.  Companies in the sector hold leading positions in their specialities and in this aspect we are on the right lines.  Technical textiles and Non woven represent an excellent opportunity for opening themselves up to new industrial sectors.

2nd) Internationalization: Demand has moved toward emerging markets, such as: China, India, Iran, Pakistan, Turkey, etc… and for this reason Spanish companies had to redirect their sales towards these markets, with additional effort that this implies, as they can not forget the already mature markets, traditional markets, to which the companies must continue responding, markets like Latin America and Europe.

Kohan Journal. How do you evaluate the share of Middle Eastern countries among their customers in the future?

Main Middle East countries where the Spanish companies are focusing their promotion are: Iran, Egypt, UAE and Syria.

Kohan Journal. Spain will host the forthcoming ITMA, in your opinion what will be the effects of holding this exhibition in Spain on the movement of its textile industry?

We are very happy that 16th ITMA exhibition will be held in Barcelona in 2011. This will be the first time that an ITMA exhibition will be staged in a Spanish city. ITMA will be held at the new state-of-the-art Fira de Barcelona Gran Via venue from 22 to 29 September 2011 inclusive. Fira Barcelona is a very successful and very attractive location for exhibitors and visitors to ITMA.
Barcelona is one of Europe`s most dynamic and attractive cities, is a metropolis fully equipped to host congresses, conventions and exhibitions of various sizes, supported by an inventory of over 40,000 hotel rooms.

The sector has gone through a very difficult time, but a clear tendency towards improvement is currently being noticed. ITMA 2007 has finished with a very positive assessment regarding Spanish companies. We look to the future with optimism and the Spanish sector is very excited about the ITMA 2011 taking place in Barcelona for the first time, so we are provided with the necessary strength to keep growing as a sector.

Kohan Journal. What are the programs of AMEC for holding ITMA 2011 ever successfully in Spain?

Of course AMEC AMTEX will be involved in the organization of ITMA 2011, as we are a CEMATEX member, and CEMATEX is the ITMA owner. But for the ITMA 2011 CEMATEX has selected, MPI Meeting Planner International, as the organizer of the exhibition.

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