Never in the history of China has there been such an extensive presentation of couture as with the Jinan in Style International Fashion Week. As such, it was only fitting that the event be formally launched with an Opening Ceremony in front of an audience of key guests, media and VIP's at the International Fashion Creative Center. With a long tradition in textiles and fabrics, the International Fashion Week is hosted by the Jinan Municipal District Government and the Department of Industry and Information Technology of the Jinan Province and is co-hosted by the Asian Couture Federation, Jinan Lixia District Government, Jinan Municipal Bureau of Commerce, Jinan Municipal Culture and Tourism Bureau, and the Jinan Daily Newspaper Group. The three day event is co-organised by Jinan Mingfu City Wen Lu Investment Holdings Co., Ltd. and Beijing Rose Studio Culture Co. Ltd and seeks to celebrate and promote Chinese and Asian couture through sharing and understanding the artistic language of fashion design. The opening address was delivered by Mr. Jiang Shan, Secretary of the Lower District Party Committee and followed by the Vice Mayor of Jinan District, Mr. Wang Guiying. Both commented on the importance of the textiles industry in Jinan and Shandong, and the necessity of creating cultural ties with other key Asian countries, notably Japan and South Korea as a means of building a platform for knowledge sharing and best practice. Dr. Frank Cintamani, Founding President of the Asian Couture Federation echoed these sentiments and the importance of promoting and preserving couture and the skills and techniques it represents. Above all, he noted the remarkable achievement of bringing together on one stage six of Asia-Pacific's leading couture talents. Following the speeches, the Opening Ceremony kicked off in style with a mesmerising video display which saw the national flags of all the respective participating couturier's countries morph into the official Jinan in Style International Fashion Week logo. This was officiated by the presence on stage of Mr. Yang Feng, Committee Member of Jinan Municipal District and Minister of the Publicity Department, Mr. Wang Guiying, Vice Mayor of Jinan District, Mr. Zhang Zhongjun, Second Inspector of the Department of Industry and Information Technology in Shandong District, Mr. Jiang Shan, Secretary of the Lower District Party Committee, Mr. Li Guoqiang, Deputy District Chief together with Dr. Frank Cintamani, Founding President of the Asian Couture Federation.
The Jinan in Style International Fashion Week represents the culmination of months of hard work, planning and organising but also the first step in a long-term partnership between the ACF and Jinan and the Shandong Province. As such, there followed a Signing Ceremony of the Memorandum of Understanding between the ACF and the host of the event, Jinan Mingfu City. This MOU sets out a long-term agreement to collaborate and partner on further initiatives and to foster closer cultural and economic ties in the region and to demonstrate leadership in the fashion industry. In the presence of the ACF's Vice President, Ms. Emily Hwang, Mr. Wang Li, General Manager of Wenlu Investment Holdings in Jinan Mingfu City and Dr. Frank Cintamani, Founding President of ACF signed this historic Memorandum of Understanding between the parties. With the signing of the document and a symbolic handshake, the ACF looks forward to continuing its presence in Jinan over the coming years.
Dr. Frank Cintamani, Founding President of the Asian Couture Federation, said, "The Asian Couture Federation was established to represent and promote the very best couture talent in Asia and on the international stage. Without doubt, China has one of the most important cultural and artistic legacies in the world, and continues to wield an important influence and impact on numerous global industries and fashion in particular. As such, we fully support the cooperation of this international fashion week, and I am delighted that the Jinan in Style International Fashion Week in Shandong Province will play a key role in showcasing the most exceptional couture talent from across Asia Pacific, but also serve as a valuable reminder of China's own unique creative heritage." To close the Opening Ceremony, all the participating couturiers came to the stage joining the signatories of the MOU, including Ms. Guo Pei, Ms. Yumi Katsura, Mr. Lie Sang Bong, Mr. Paul Vasileff, Mr. Sebastian Gunawan and Mr. Songzio for a group photo. Mr. Zhang Jun, Deputy General Secretary of Jinan Municipal Government, Mr. Liu Yanqiu, Director of Jinan Municipal Bureau of Commerce, Mr. Yan Liang, Director of Jinan Municipal Culture and Tourism Bureau joined them alongside Mr. Ma Li, Chairman of Jinan Daily Newspaper Group, and Party Secretary and President of Jinan Daily. Not surprisingly, the media were keen to ask a number of questions of the assembled guests and to gain a deeper insight into their presence and expectations. Needless to say, the Opening Ceremony made national news across China and was covered by all the major TV, newspaper and media outlets. A proud moment and momentous day for the ACF.