Trade fairs reworked as focus turns to online events
The Commerce Ministry is set to host its first online trade show -- Multimedia Online Virtual Exhibition (Move) -- along with a business matching platform for digital content entrepreneurs in late May, expecting sales worth 1 billion baht.
Somdet Susomboon, director-general of the International Trade Promotion Department, said that because the pandemic remains rampant and worldwide lockdown measures continue, the department has delayed all trade fairs both domestically and overseas until September. The department's new focus is online exhibitions or virtual trade shows to boost exports and prevent human contact.
The department usually holds six key international trade fairs domestically, including the Bangkok Gems & Jewelry Fair and Style Bangkok.
Move is scheduled for May 25-27. THAIFEX Virtual Trade Fair is planned for June and the Lifestyle Online Virtual Exhibition for July.
A website (move.ditp.go.th) will create a comprehensive directory of Thai companies offering products and services within the film, TV, animation and gaming industries. This should assist international companies in finding potential suppliers and partners, Mr Somdet said. The directory will be maintained as a permanent resource.
The Move Live event will allow international companies to connect with Thai companies and engage in one-on-one live chat meetings, view trailers and work samples, and exchange documents.
The Move Live event has been designed to closely replicate the process of a trade show. International companies will be able to make advance appointments and conduct meetings from the convenience of their own offices or homes. The dedicated secure platform will use Zoom technology.
Potential international participants will not be restricted by location or by registration to individual trade shows, but will be drawn from the database of over 10,000 global companies that have conducted business with Thai firms, attended events or expressed interest in doing business in Thailand.
Thailand's digital content industry generates annual revenue of US$3.3 billion.
Arada Fuangtong, the department's assistant director-general and director of the Service Trade Promotion Office, said more than 50 Thai operators from the film, animation, character and other multimedia industries will take part in the first online trade show.
In the wake of the pandemic, the department has already organised a number of teleconferences and online matching between Thai exporters and foreign importers.
Officials have also facilitated communication with Thai and foreign online trade platforms and Thai exporters in categories that have potential, such as fruit (with South Korea) in April, and food, fashion, beauty and healthcare and home decorations (with Cambodia) in April.