The private sector has been called upon to take advantage of this year’s Made-in-Ghana Products Fair, to be held in Italy, to expand their businesses and clientele base on the international market.
Launching the fair in Accra, Gideon Quarcoo, Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA), stressed the need for exporters to focus on increasing the volume of exports to the international market to address the country’s balance of trade and payment deficit.
The fair, scheduled for October 13 to 15, at the Art Design Box RHO in Milan, is on the theme, “Transforming Ghana’s export trade: The role of Milan Expo.”
Under the auspices of the Ministry of Trade and Industry, the exhibition is an initiative of the Doulos Consult Limited, an event management and marketing company.
Among others, the fair is to promote Ghanaian products, services, businesses and brands to the European market and also to attract investment, cooperation and partnership for the various sectors of the economy.
He said Ghana’s quest to achieve a Non-Traditional Export (NTE) revenue target of $5 billion in 2019 could not be achieved without the active support of the private sector.
Mr. Quarcoo said it was against that backdrop that the National Export Strategy had been developed to support initiatives aimed at boosting the country’s exports.
He lauded Doulos Consult Limited for initiating the programme and urged Ghanaian exhibitors to focus on quality to enable their products to compete with others on the international market.
In his remark, Lorenzo Pinelli, Deputy Head of Mission at the Italian Embassy in Accra, traced the bilateral relations between Ghana and Italy from the early ‘60s when an Italian consortium, Impregilo was contracted to carry out the dredging of the Volta River bed and construction of the Akosombo Dam.
He said the Milan expo would deepen the relationship between Italy and Ghana, and create business avenues for the private sector in the respective countries, adding that Italian Chamber of Commerce would soon be launched to promote trade between the two countries.
Mr. Pinelli pledged Italy’s support for the fair, saying, “we welcome the initiative by the organisers and all partners involved in this programme”.
Wakefield Ackuaku, Business Development Manager of Doulos Consult Limited, said the Milan Expo was an annual programme held in Italy between May and October to create a platform for countries across the world to exhibit their products and services to the global community.
He explained that October 13 to 15 had been dedicated to Ghana to showcase the products and services produced in Ghana and also provide opportunity for businesses in Ghana to engage in one-on-one with their foreign counterparts and strike business deals.
Mr. Ackuaku said the exhibition was opened to players in the services and food industries, agro-processing, financial services, mining, travel and tourism, fashion, textile and garment and NTE sector.
The Business Development Manager said the four-day programme would involve exhibitions, business and investment forum and match-making, and side attractions such as entertainment, music and showcasing of Ghanaian foods.
Mr. Ackuaku expressed his gratitude to the Ministry of Trade and Industry, the Italian Embassy for their support and AT Group for sponsoring the programme.
By Kingsley Asare & Emmanuel Agorsor