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Press Release

November 19, 2015

Beautiful things and sustainable products from around the world – Bazaar Berlin opens its doors

• Federal Minister Müller: fair trading is the yardstick for international cooperation

• Around 500 exhibitors from 62 countries on the Berlin Exhibition Grounds

• Bazaar Berlin takes place from 18 to 22 November 2015

Berlin, 18 November 2015 – This year, fair trade is the dominant theme in the display halls at Bazaar Berlin, and on Wednesday, the international consumer exhibition opened its doors to the public on the Berlin Exhibition Grounds. Over a period of five days 500 exhibitors from 62 countries will be displaying beautiful things, articles with a personal touch and sustainable products from around the world. Among those who were first to pay a visit were Federal Minister of Economic Cooperation and Development Dr. Gerd Müller, who was greeted at the Palais am Funkturm by Messe Berlin CEO Dr. Christian Göke and trade fair director Karel Heijs.

Accordingly, the schools programme in the Palais am Funkturm was the first stop on their opening tour of the fair, which this year carries the slogan ’Fair trade for a fair world’. On the stand of the Berlin-based world shop ‘A Janela’ schoolchildren from Zille primary school in the Berlin district of Kreuzberg were stitching together footballs from patches of leather. They were able to find out from Judith Siller, managing director of the world shop, that around two-thirds of footballs around the world are manufactured by women in Pakistan who work under atrocious working conditions and are poorly paid. Federal Minister Müller spoke with the 12 year-old schoolchildren about his ministry’s commitment to fair trade and presented them with a fair trade football. This year’s schools programme is expected to attract more than 1,100 participants.

Minister Müller: human rights and sustainability standards must go hand in hand in the supply chain

Following the successful launch of the Fair Trade Market in 2015, at this year’s Bazaar Berlin, in addition to fair trade fashion there will now also be specific information on fair trade textiles. On the stand organised by Engagement Global in Hall 15.1 both consumers and resellers can find out more about the fair trade collections of various suppliers, how the Textile Alliance came into being, and about the certification of textiles.

During his visit to the stand Federal Minister Dr. Müller said: “Human rights and sustainability standards must go hand in hand in the production chain, regardless of the product or service, be it cocoa, coffee or textiles.“ The Sustainable Textile Alliance showed that politics, business, associations, trade unions and society were capable of taking on joint responsibility, he added.

“We want to improve the social conditions and ecological standards in the places where our textiles are manufactured, and to do so all over the world. Fair trade must always be the yardstick by which international cooperation is measured”, he said.

The opening tour concluded with a visit to the stand of the Egyptian fashion label Allaga. Launched following a successful training course under the heading of ’Ethno Fashion Design’, the project continues to receive the support of Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development in its second phase. Bassant Helmi of Global Project Partners e.V. informed Minister Müller that the fashion label, which was created as part of the first project, is due to expand with a range of accessoires. Thus, the project contributes to the value chain in the Egyptian fashion and textile sector and helps to create and secure employment and income, especially for Egyptian women. By supporting the Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development promotes entrepreneurial involvement in developing and emerging countries.

Exotic shopping mall and marketplace of cultures

This year the slogan of Bazaar Berlin is ’Where buying is giving’. Over the five days of the fair around 40,000 visitors from Germany and abroad are expected to attend. Well in time for Christmas they will be able to purchase gifts for themselves and others amid the unique international atmosphere of Bazaar Berlin. A glance at the halls confirms that there is something for everyone at this event. Visitors can discover, look around, marvel and naturally buy products in five themed sections just as if they were at a real bazaar. Sections include the World Market with exotic goods and typical locally made handicrafts from around the world, Art + Style, featuring fashion items with a personal touch, jewellery and accessoires, as well as Natural Living with a wide variety of health products. If visitors follow the beat of drums they will find themselves in the hall entitled Living Africa, and in the Winter at home section visitors can enjoy a pre-Christmas atmosphere.

About Bazaar Berlin

Launched in 1962 as Partners for Progress, the international consumer exhibition for handicrafts, jewellery, textiles and home accessoires changed its name to Bazaar Berlin in 2014. Every year in November around 40,000 visitors come to the Berlin Exhibition Grounds to purchase exotic articles from around the world, either to keep or to give away as gifts. Last year the new Fair Trade Market made its successful debut. Bazaar Berlin is organised by Messe Berlin GmbH.