Dev Nair: “Visiting China is a pilgrimage for every printer”

Dev Nair was on his first trip to China last month after he was elected as the president of AIFMP. During his visit, he attended the fifth All in Print China expo and India Day in Shanghai and visited print institutes in Beijing. Nair shares his China experience in conversation with PrintWeek India's Sriraam Selvam

03 Dec 2014 | By Sriraam Selvam

Sriraam Selvam (SS): Are you delighted at the manner in which your first overseas trip as AIFMP president turned out?
Dev Nair (DN):
Of course! Firstly, I was representing the largest ever delegation from AIFMP to any overseas exhibition and second factor to rejoice is the grand celebration of India Day 16th of November which I think was unparalleled to any such event held before, anywhere in the world. I also had the unique opportunity to visit the largest printing institute of the world BIGC (Beijing Institute of Graphic Communication). To me, visiting China is like a pilgrimage for any printer as China is the birth place of printing. I learnt during this visit that the Chinese translation of Diamond Sutra, a Buddhist text was printed on paper in China 868 AD, much before the invention of movable types by Johannes Guttenberg in Europe.

SS: The organisers say: "the show has established itself in terms of attracting visitors, exhibitors and speakers from across the globe". Your view?
I do appreciate their organisational skill. While China’s printing industry is transforming into a bigger & stronger sector- this spectacular event themed "Inspiring Vision of New Printing Era" showed us how by display of a range of updated printing technologies focusing on industry innovation. It was definitely a grand presentation and a knowledge feast for the visitors.

SS: You made a presentation about Indian print industry. What were the highlights of the reports from the other country heads?
My presentation/speech was on ‘India Day’ aimed to benefit the Chinese printing fraternity and it was of greater significance because the event did not have speakers from any other country.

Besides that, we had distributed a booklet, published by AIFMP and compiled by Kamal Chopra, Chairman - International Relations at our stall in the exhibition.

SS: What kind of packaging innovations and carton packaging trends did you see in China?
The innovations in the automatic rigid box making machine was conspicuous. Another innovation that turned heads was the personalised packaging boxes combined with impressive 3D printing.

SS: China Print is a validation that the Chinese print industry is making life easier for the designers, packaging professionals and marketers that need a structural packaging design or print with short runs. What are the lessons India can learn?
There were several lessons that we took away from the exhibition but the key take away was the introduction of personalised packaging which would exponentially increase the scope of designing in this sector. In my opinion, Indian packaging printers should pay serious attention to this innovation and capitalise the market potential with it.

SS: Any AIFMP alliance or partnership that was inked?
Well yes. PEIAC - Printing Equipment Industries Association of China has agreed to support the forthcoming PAMEX and we have signed cooperation agreement with them for this purpose. AIFMP will also organise a buyer-seller meet during Print-China at Dongguan in April 2015. The Beijing Institute of Graphic Communication ( BIGC ) has agreed to a student/teacher exchange programme and to start printing education using  English language in Beijing.