Local companies who participated in the inaugural Intra-African Trade Fair (IATF) are confident of future business deals on the continent.
Led by the Department of Trade and Industry (dti), the companies participated in the trade fair through the department’s Export Marketing and Investment Assistance (EMIA) Scheme.
Managing Director of Conax Manufacturing in Springs Gauteng, Freddy Mugeri, said the fair which recently concluded in Cairo, Egypt, created a platform for business people to interact.
Alongside other companies, Conax Manufacturing showcased their products and services at the South African National Pavilion.
“Even though there are many challenges to overcome including infrastructure and trade finance solutions in Africa, IATF created a platform for us businesspeople to meet with African countries like Angola and South Sudan which are not so easy to reach outside forums like this one,” said Mugeri on Wednesday.
The representative of Sunope Pharm in Virgina, Free State, Irene Snyman, said IATF afforded her an opportunity to have business to business meetings with key stakeholders in the pharmaceutical industry.
“I will be revisiting Egypt in January 2019 to do clinical trials with the medical board, and follow up on the discussion to appoint an agent and distributor in Cairo to distribute our products in this market and neighbouring countries. I also made contacts with several representatives of several countries and the interest was enormous,” she said.
Meanwhile, South African Ambassador to Egypt, Vusi Mavimbela, said African countries have to improve their trade with one another.
“If we want to integrate the African continent and grow the economies in the continent we have to start by promoting trade among ourselves.
“It is much more powerful to trade as a united continent, because once you strengthened trading amongst ourselves we are able to create a bigger economy, and when you create a bigger economy, you create a bigger voice that will make it possible able to compete with our regional blocs on a more equal footing,” said Mavimbela.
Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies led the delegation to the seven-day fair that concluded on Monday. – SAnews.gov.za