Business News of 2014-03-11

AGI to hold solo exhibition in Burkina Faso

The Association of Ghana Industries is putting together a group of companies dealing in made-in-Ghana products for a solo exhibition in neighbouring Burkina Faso.

The exhibition is the initiative of the association, an advocacy institution for manufacturing and allied service providers, with support from the Export Development and Agriculture Investment Fund (EDAIF) and the Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA).

It is to take place at the Azalai Independence Hotel, which is at the heart of Ouagadougou, the capital of Burkina Faso.

The exhibition is expected to run from March 28 to April 2 and will be opened to all businesses in the country dealing in made-in-Ghana products.

The President of the AGI, Mr James Asare-Adjei, said at the launch in Accra that the event was part of efforts by the association to provide a conduit for businesses in the country to penetrate the West African market.

"The sub-regional market is a big one, comprising about 150 people, and our ability to get market there will help expand our individual businesses and the economy at large," Mr Asare-Adjei, who is also the Chief Executive Officer of Asadtek Group Limited based in Tema, said at the launch.

He explained that although Ghanaian businesses and members of the AGI in particular had participated in similar exhibitions hosted by the Burkinabe government, the association had seen it necessary to solely organise its own event where made-in-Ghana products would be showcased to the populace in that country.

"By this, we are also sending a message to the government that given the chance, we can limit our dependence on imports," he said.

This year's event is the fifth of its kind and is expected to serve as a market-searching opportunity for most of the small and medium-scale enterprises (SMEs) under the AGI.

The most recent one was in 2006, where dozens of AGI members that are into the production of Ghanaian products participated.

The CEO of AGI, Mr Seth Twum-Akwaboah, explained that although solo exhibitions in Burkina Faso, a country of about 15.6 million, was not meant to be a frequent one, the association had found it worthwhile repeating.

"The whole idea was for us to give you (Ghana-made producers) the opportunity to explore the market, make permanent business contacts and exit but we have seen that having stayed off for something, it is worth the while going back to renew those contacts,” Mr Twum-Akwaboah said at the launch, which was attended by some prospective participants.

He encouraged members to endeavour to participate, explaining that the association had laid a solid foundation upon which participants could leverage to showcase their wares to that country's buyers.

Registration of participating companies is currently ongoing and is expected to end soon to enable the association to begin plans for the travel.

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