| A customer looks at wooden artifacts at the fair on Wednesday. Picture by UB Photos |
Dec. 12: The ongoing 7th Asom International Trade Fair, which began on December 4, has so far received a good response with 75,000 to 80,000 people visiting the stalls set up by traders from India as well as other countries.
Organised by the North East Trade Promotion and Development Council, the fair will conclude on December 17. Over 300 exhibitors from the region, other parts of the country and the neighbouring nations of Sri Lanka, Thailand, Nepal and Korea are participating in the event.
“We have been organising the trade fair for the past six years. The fair, which is aimed at encouraging trade between artisans of the participating countries, has helped participants to acquire a lot of customers, some of who order bulk goods. Apart from them, different companies are also exhibiting their goods for promotional purposes. Till December 11, we have received about 75,000 to 80,000 visitors and we expect more to come in the last few days,” said N.P. Yadav, chief functionary of the organisers.
Semi-precious gems and jewellery from Sri Lanka, colourful accessories from Thailand and handmade ornamental clutches from Pakistan are a big draw for women customers. The soft blankets from Korea, decorative pottery from Rajasthan, beautifully carved wooden statues of animals and birds made by local artisans are added attractions.
Electronic goods, home appliances, kitchenware, healthcare and agro products, processed food, a variety of textiles and garments, soft furnishings, footwear and toys for children also add to a customer’s choice.
Those weary from stall-hopping can also dig into delicious north Indian delicacies being served at the food stall in the venue or taste some really spicy chaats at another stall.
“We are also trying to help out local artisans by charging a lower participation fee as most are not in a position to pay the regular amount. The development commissioner, handicrafts, under the Union ministry of textiles, is sponsoring their stalls. But they will have to make use of their marketing skills while dealing with customers. The prices they charge have to be reasonable so that customers believe they are making a good bargain and in turn boost their sales,” said Yadav.
“We are receiving a good number of customers. This time we brought different jewellery, decorative artificial flowers and accessories for women. They are available at a minimum price of Rs 50,” said a participant from Thailand.