An estimated 200 foreign exhibitors from more than 15 countries will participate at the Lagos International Trade Fair scheduled for November 2016.
Five hundred thousand visitors are expected to attend the fair over a 10-day period, according to Sola Oyetayo, chairman of the trade promotion board of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), which organises the fair.
The trade fair, which is expected to hold between November 4 and 13, will focus on positioning the Nigerian economy for diversification and sustainable growth.
The fair acknowledges the critical importance of revenue diversification at this point when oil price crash has cramped government’s capacity to meet obligations.
According to Oyetayo, though the Nigerian economy is already diversified at a certain level, the theme was chosen to inject sufficient dose of sustainability into the economic management strategies.
“It is true that nations of the world are generally experiencing economic turmoil, particularly in the wake of continuous drop of the oil price. Nigerian economy has been worst hit largely because of the lip service paid to other sectors of the economy while depending only on oil for earnings over the years,” he said.
Oyetayo said the current situation was caused by oil price shock, volatility in FX, burst of ‘rent seekers’ fiscal rascality, neglect of manufacturing, lack of adequate planning and inertia in decision-making process, among others, stressing the need for the government to declare emergencies in critical sectors to revive the country’s prostrate economy.
On the features of the fair, the chairman of the trade promotion board said the general interest fair would take place at the Tafawa Balewa Square (TBS), Onikan, Lagos, from November 4 and 13, adding that the TBS hosting the general fair had an average exhibition space of 40,000 square metres.
Exhibitors are expected from China, Japan, India, Indonesia, Ghana, Egypt, Jordan, Pakistan, Turkey, among other countries, pointing out that indigenous exhibitors are also registering in large numbers to take advantage of the market naturally created by the population of visitors to the fair, he said.
There will also be Corporate Business-to-Business (B2B) Exhibition between November 7 and 11 at Eko Hotel, which is a response to the demand of big corporations and foreign exhibitors who are more interested in networking and business matchmaking.
There will also be the creative industry fair, which will feature the creative segment of the economy that is currently making a big impact on the GDP.
Oyetayo said there will be 30th anniversary and investment conference to commemorate 30 years the LCCI took over the fair from the Federal Government, adding that there will be competitive essay writing by secondary school students across Lagos State. This will evaluate the knowledge of the younger generation on the economy and deepen their knowledge of trade fair.
He said there would also be a Special Day, when organisations, governments and embassies will promote their products, services, culture and potential to investors.
SMEs are eager to participate, he said, saying that businesses still had confidence in Nigeria and the fair despite recession.
Source: News Express.
*Photo shows a stand at a past Lagos International Trade Fair.