With the foreseeable end of economic sanctions, both German industrial firms and trade fair operators are rushing to establish business ties in Iran. The country’s trade fair industry has already been expanding its foreign business and exporting its leading trade fairs worldwide for years, and now Iran is providing it with a new market.
One of the pioneers is Messe Stuttgart, which, together with the Association of German Machine Tool Factories (VDW), will organize the AMB Iran in late May.
“The AMB is the first trade fair to be brought to Iran from abroad,” Bernhard Müller, head of Messe Stuttgart International, told Handelsblatt.
The company, based in the southwestern German state of Baden-Württemberg, has cleared its first hurdle by obtaining the required event license. Messe Stuttgart is working with a local company in Iran. “The local partner is indispensible for the implementation of the project,” Mr. Müller stressed.
As a test run of sorts, a conference with a connected trade exhibition will be held in Tehran from May 30 to June 1. It is an offshoot of the AMB International Exhibition for Metalworking, which takes place in Stuttgart every two years. In 2014, 1,350 exhibitors from almost 30 countries exhibited the latest developments in machine tools and precision tools at the AMB.
Though the event in Iran won’t be at that level, “there is tremendous acceptance,” said Mr. Müller. The expectations for this first event have already been exceeded, with more than 100 exhibitors from other countries expected to attend. In the past, it was all but impossible for export-oriented German companies to participate in capital goods trade fairs in Iran. But this year, the German economics ministry is offering seven official trade fair opportunities, and it is expected to offer 11 next year.