Spending in Gulf country nears US$1 billion as international players

Paperworld ME 2017 (2)Dubai, UAE: The UAE is riding high in the Middle East children’s toy sector, with the retail value of toys and games in the Gulf country estimated to comprise 28 per cent of the regional market by 2020, new research has revealed.


According to analysts Euromonitor International (EMI), consumers spent US$869 million on toys, games, and video games in the UAE in 2015, comprising nearly a third of the Middle East’s US$2.9 billion retail value for the year.


Spending in the UAE is estimated to be worth US$1.1 billion by 2020, increasing by 6.2 per cent annually, while the Middle East market overall will be worth just under US$4 billion in the same year.


Growth rates remain healthy due to rising populations, increasing disposable incomes, and a boost in tourism according to EMI, while at US$101 per capita, the UAE is one of the largest spenders per population of toys, games, and video games in the world.


This will come as good news to international manufacturers and suppliers which have their sights set on boosting exports to key emerging economies at the upcoming Playworld and Paperworld Middle East 2017 trade show in Dubai.


The 7th edition of the three-day event takes place from 14-16 March 2017 at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre, connecting exhibitors with more than 6,500 trade buyers from throughout the wider Middle East and African region.


New Capable from Hong Kong is among the manufacturers to have signed on at Paperworld Middle East 2017, and will use the annual platform to showcase a variety of toys, sport games, educational games, and children’s party items.


Robin Joe, Sales Manager at New Capable, said the company plans to launch several new products to the Middle East market, including magnetic blocks and remote controlled drones.


“We’d like to establish more business relationships with regional buyers at Paperworld Middle East, and to do so, we’re launching several new items in a market that is increasingly demanding the latest in high tech products that are functional but still competitively priced,” said Joe.


“Currently we undertake around US$1 million of sales revenue in the region, and we’re expecting a 50 to 100 per cent increase on this in 2017 as we expand our reach in key emerging markets.”


According to the EMI, a common trend in the UAE is to give pocket money to children so they learn the value of money and make their own decisions. Typically, a child between 9 and 15-years-old may receive from between US$15 to US$70 on a monthly basis, while children over 15 would receive from US$70 to US$220.


In response, retailers are creating an atmosphere where children can interact with toys and make an informed decision to purchase them.  Retailers stock toys that are sold from a minimum of US$3 up to nearly US$1,000, giving children the opportunity to use their pocket money for cheaper toys, while adults can decide whether to purchase the more expensive toys for their children.


Paperworld Middle East 2017 is the Middle East and North Africa’s largest trade show for stationery, paper, and office supplies, and will feature more than 300 exhibitors from 36 countries showcasing their latest wares, from office supplies, paper, school, party and gift articles, to toys, games, wrapping paper, printer consumables, and arts and crafts.


The dedicated trade show is expected to attract more than 6,500 visitors from 105 countries and will return with popular features including the Green Office Area, where the spotlight will shine on sustainably produced essential office supplies; and the Wrapstar gift wrapping competition.  More information is available at: www.paperworldME.com and www.playworldme.com.





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