HDS/L, the German shoe and leathergoods industry association, has reported on the Fashion World Tokyo Autumn show of Oct. 2-4, where it was exhibiting for the fourth time. A total of 1,052 organizations from 35 countries exhibited at the show. According to its organizers, 20,239 people visited the show, not only from Japan, but also from other Asian countries. HDS/L exhibited together with 13 German shoe suppliers, including Romika, Ara and Esgano. The number of shoes exported from Germany to Japan decreased slightly by 0.6 percent from 541,303 to 537,841 in the first half of 2019 from the same period of the previous year. The value of such shoes increased from €16.4 to €19 million in the same period, thanks to an increase in high-quality German footwear. German shoe companies hope that the free-trade agreement between Japan and the European Union, which came into force on Feb. 1, will have a positive impact on their business. Lower import tariffs, less bureaucracy and faster approval procedures seem promising. But some shoe suppliers fear an economic slowdown in Japan, because of high public debt. China is Japan's most important trading partner, and the trade dispute between it and the U.S. is already affecting Japan, as orders from China are increasing.