Ongwediva Trade Fair attracts 418 exhibitors

Stefanus Nashama

The 2023 Ongwediva Annual Trade Fair (OATF) which has officially opened over the weekend, has attracted 418 local and international exhibitors.

The Deputy Minister of Industrialisation and Trade, Verna Sinimbo, who spoke on behalf of President Hage Geingob during the official opening, said the 418 local and international exhibitors reflect a fair number of active economic sectors in the country.

This includes the informal sector that also contributes to the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), she said.

The theme for this year’s trade fair is “Embracing a sustainable economy, linking smart markets”.

Sinombo noted that the event creates opportunities that facilitate trade and business linkages between local entrepreneurs and foreign business personalities.

The OATF serves as an opportunity to expose the products and services of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), which can create a forum for smart partnerships with established corporate entities.

“Efforts like this are highly commendable as they contribute immensely to the economic development of the region and the government strategy in achieving the national goals and objectives of Vision 2030,” she explained.

Sinimbo used the opportunity to encourage customers, suppliers and producers to build business networks and relationships to sustain the survival of the businesses.

“This Trade Fair brings Micro-Small and Medium Enterprises, big corporations and investors nationally and internationally to one place to share business ideas that can lead to the creation and development of new enterprises, job opportunities and poverty alleviation in the country, she noted.

According to her, Namibia has adopted an economic space that is open to both domestic and international investors aimed at growing the economy and business development in the country.

Although the Government supports trade exhibitions as a means to supplement its programs and empower communities, Sinimbo said extra efforts are required to develop the trade exhibition shows, into vibrant opportunities for innovation and new business development for both young and old.

She also urged exhibitors not to focus on instant sales only but on exposure and discovering new markets and opportunities to appreciate local, regional and global dynamics of business.

Sinimbo urged Namibians to play a crucial role in business development to grow the country’s economy and create employment opportunities, especially for young people.

Meanwhile, Ongwediva Town Mayor, Taarah Shalyefu, invited all business persons to join the Trade Fair for business development and opportunities.

While also recognising the importance of political support in the creation of business opportunities, saying it contributes to economic growth.

“Equally, your support as traders, exhibitors and visitors plays a vital role in making sure that the Ongwediva Annual Trade Fair activates its set objectives of business networking,” he said.

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