LOCAL furniture manufacturers aim to penetrate high-end niche markets overseas to boost export revenues.
“We will be looking into the developments of Russia and Qatar. Very recently, we had a mission to Qatar. But of course, Dubai will always be a market for villas and we have some projects in Saudi (Arabia),” said Myrna Bituin, Philippine Exporters Confederation Inc. (Philexport) trustee for the furniture sector.
She hopes exporters will “band together” to supply, to these high-end markets abroad, particularly indoor and outdoor furniture.
On home decor, Bituin said the Foreign Buyers Association of the Philippines (Fobap) is actively working with the local companies which could supply the market in the United States.
In the industry roadmap, furniture manufacturers expect the US market to continue to grow in the next five years.
“That’s why our strategy is to find a niche,” she said. “We are (also) hopeful about Russia. It’s very surprising. I was (also) shipping to Latvia.”
As they tap into the high-end export markets, Bituin said some exporters are actively supplying a growing number of hotels in the country.
“Ten or 12 years ago, we as an industry joined in marketing to the local hotels and developments in the Philippines. We are quite successful in condominium (projects). And today, a lot of hotels are refurbishing. We are going to look into this,” she added. Philexport News And Features