By Georgina Verdeflor | Market Innovation Division (MID) | DTI-Export Marketing Bureau

13 May 2019

Published also in Business Mirror

A NUMBER of Philippine exporters will exhibit their products for the first time at the 17th Import Goods Fair (IGF) organized from June 27 to 29, 2019, by the Korea Importers Association (KOIMA) at the Hall B, Coex, Seoul, South Korea.

This year’s event is jointly implemented by the Department of Trade and Industry’s Export Marketing Bureau (DTI-EMB) and the Philippine Trade and Investment Center in Seoul, South Korea.

The IGF has been successfully designed and hosted with the support and participation of South Korea’s Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy, and the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (Kotra), as well as many foreign embassies in Korea.

The “Import Goods Fair” is one and only B2B exhibition in Korea, which displays foreign consumer goods, food and beverages, handicrafts, cosmetics, and household items including kitchen appliances and home decoration. The IGF is intended to help foreign manufacturers and suppliers by providing opportunities to introduce and advertise their famous brands and quality products to Korean importers and consumers.

In the 2018 show, 200 companies from 59 countries participated.  There were 16,271 visitors, 70 percent of whom were importers and 23 percent interested in Southeast Asian products. This year, participants will meet Korean importers, distributors of department stores and retailers including e-markets.

Koima has organized the IGF annually since 2003. It is Korea’s only private organization exclusively dedicated to facilitating imports to Korea, with more than 8,500 members that handle 70 percent of Korea’s total imports, which reached over $436.5 billion in 2015 from merely $1 billion in 1968.

In the past, Chairman Shinn of KOIMA led a delegation composed of 103 delegates, and 15 KOIMA officials to the Philippines. KOIMA organizes purchasing missions mainly to countries that have trade deficit with Korea with the purpose of eventually creating balanced trade between their partner economies.

In 2018 the Republic of Korea was the fourth major trading partner of the Philippines (out of the Philippines’s 221 trading partners), eighth biggest export market (out of 211 markets) and second import supplier (out of 198 suppliers). Total bilateral trade was valued at $13.7 billion, with Philippine exports to South Korea at $2.5 billion and Philippine imports from South Korea at $11.2 billion.

The Philippines has a regional free-trade agreement with Korea through the ASEAN-Korea Free-Trade Agreement (AKFTA), which has facilitated the free trade of goods between the two countries.

For more information about IGF, please visit

For inquiries please contact (Mmes) Mary Fatima N. Barrameda or Georgina A. Verdeflor of the Market Innovation Division at (02) 465-3300 locals 216; 208 or via e-mail,;