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The Warsaw Voice » Business » March 31, 2011
Business & Economy
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Gold of the North
March 31, 2011   
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Amber, sometimes dubbed the “gold of the North,” has fascinated the high and mighty of this world for centuries. The world’s largest trade fair and exhibition focusing on amber, the 18th Amberif International Fair of Amber, Jewelry and Gemstones, took place in Gdańsk in March. The event is popular among jewelers, retailers, designers and connoisseurs of jewelry. This year’s fair was attended by 440 exhibitors from 16 countries and 6,000 visitors from 40 countries.

Amberif is the place to be for all those who want to know what’s new about amber and jewelry and find out about the latest trends. It is a trade fair where small, family-run businesses exhibit their products side by side with jewelry giants. Amberif is an event for jeweler’s stores, wholesale outlets, owners of galleries and all other businesses and people who distribute gemstones and jewelry to buyers around the world.

The four-day fair is an opportunity to establish new business contacts and check out the latest trends in international design. Regular visitors include producers and distributors of tools used in the jewelry sector, members of trade associations and scientists, museum experts and journalists. The Amberif fair is held along with an array of educational and promotional events such as seminars for fans of jewelry and amber.

“We encourage tourist and marketing companies to attend Amberif if they want to make amber part of their services or trademark,” said Andrzej Kasprzak, president of the Gdańsk International Fair company, which organized the Amberif fair. “The world is slowly recovering from the global crisis, people are becoming more keen to spend and invest money and search for new markets and ideas. Time will tell who we manage to get interested in amber. Amberif will be like a litmus test in this department.”

Kasprzak said the 20th Amberif fair in 2013 will be held at the Gdańsk International Fair’s new AmberExpo Fair and Conference Center, the construction of which will begin soon in Gdańsk near a stadium that is being built especially for the Euro 2012 soccer championships.

For 15 years, the organizers of Amberif have given out the international Amberif Design Award to amber jewelry designers. The theme of this year’s competition was “Story Telling.” A total of 101 works were submitted by 79 designers from 12 countries. Amber—together with banded flint, a unique variety of flint that is only found in one place on earth, the northern edge of Poland’s ¦więtokrzyskie Mountains—will be the official stone of the Polish presidency of the European Union, which begins July 1.

Ewa Gibczyńska
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