by Lagi Keresoma
APIA: 5 Oct 2010: The Samoa Mamanu & Elei Design Association (SMEA) will participate in the Papua New Guinea Festival in June 2011 after receiving an invitation from the PNG Trade Mission delegation to the China Expo last week.
They are also working together with the Solomon Islands organisers of the Pacific Arts Festival to bring SMEA and their Samoan designed products over for the festival.
SMEA was one of the organisations that took advantage of the Shanghai Expo to showcase their locally made products, and to explore new trade and business opportunities and commercial markets. SMEA arrived in Shanghai during the celebration of the country week and were able to use that week to market and promote their products.
SMEA sent a container full of Samoan handicrafts prior to their departure and are grateful to the Pacific Pavilion agent in China, Ms Fang Fang for her efforts in promoting their products. They also had the opportunity to demonstrate how the elei is printed on the materials. Their demonstration brought out interest from other business people in the region, hence the invitation to participate in their perspective festivals.
According to Sarah Devoe and Luana Malaki of SMEA, the trip to China was worth it despite a few obstacles that hindered the commercial side.
SMEA is grateful to the support from the Private Sector Support Fund (PSSF), Papali’i Grant Percival and the Samoa Team in China for the support rendered to them.
SMEA’s representatives who travelled to China were business women Leulua’iali’i Agnes Passi, Serah Devoe and