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New trade day

Wednesday 17 November 2010 | Published in Regional

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The Business Trade Investment Board (BTIB) is gearing up for its inaugural Trade Day Vaka Eiva 2010 market, to be held as part of the week-long international paddling tournament.

From midday on Tuesday November 23, 14 authentic Cook Islands art and craft stalls will be established in the Vaka Village at Avarua’s wharf.

Products for the market must originate from the Cook Islands, and must have either been wholly produced or obtained in the country, or have undergone substantial transformation in the Cook Islands.

BTIB trade and marketing manager Danny Williams said it was the first time a market held in conjunction with Vaka Eiva had been restricted to such products.

“Previously there have been stalls selling mainly t-shirts and other paddling merchandise, but there hasn’t been anything on this scale or to this level of authenticity before.”

On offer will be jewellery, tivaivai, woven baskets and mats, shells, pearls, natural oils and creams, pareu, pounding stones, wooden bowls, and other examples of traditional art and craft.

About 20 applications were received by the BTIB from hopeful vendors for the event, including some from Mauke, Manihiki, Mangaia, Penrhyn, and Pukapuka as well as Rarotonga and Aitutaki.

The BTIB was helping vendors from outer islands by facilitating special freight fees and providing stall equipment, Williams said.

“We’ll be spending a few thousand on this particular event, and to help those involved,” he said.

The seven-hour Trade Day event has been organised to tie in with the Trader Jack’s Boiler Swim.

“That always generates large crowds of people in the afternoon,” Williams said.