Entrepreneurs who participated in the recent Intra African Trade Fair 2023 (IATF 2023) in Cairo Egypt have lauded the efforts by the Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA) to develop small medium entrepreneurs in the country.
They commended GEPA’s sustained efforts at developing not only the capacities of Ghanaian entrepreneurs but providing markets for their products.
The fair attended by about 70 Ghanaian SMEs, was organised by the African Export-Import Bank, in collaboration with the African Union and the AfCTFA Secretariat is the third of its kind in Africa.
It brought together businesses from across Africa under the theme: ‘Building Bridges for a Successful AfCFTA.’
In attendance were heads of state, former heads of state, senior government officials, continental and global African businesses. The fair run was from November 9 to 15, 2023.
Speaking to the media on arrival, Mrs Jaqueline Ruby Sackitey, Managing Director of JACQUIS, manufacturers of Jacquis Peanut Butter, one of the SMEs selected to
participate, commended GEPA for providing SMEs such an opportunity to show the entrepreneurial skills and capacity of women and women groups in Ghana and to export to the world.
‘My expectation is that SME’s going forward would get the right partnerships locally to boost production for the global market. Ghana has great products that we can share with the world and we need massive support to execute this,’ she said.
‘Jacquis Peanut Butter, one of Ghana’s quality hand-picked peanut butter, is certified by the Food and Drugs Authority, and it is currently lining the shelves of major supermarket shelves in the country, ‘ she stated.
Mrs Sackitey, who is also the Vice President of the Africa Women’s Entrepreneurship Programme (AWEP), noted the importance of intra-African trade, saying that it was the breakthrough point for small medium enterprises and urged African governments and organisations to ease movement of goods on the continent.
They should also eliminate double certifications and documentation of pr
oducts when moving goods and products across the continent.
Intra-Africa trade stands rather low at a mere 14.4 per cent of total African exports. It is expected that AfCFTA would catapult intra-African trade by a decent 33 per cent and cut the Africa’s trade deficit by 51 per cent.
The fair aimed providing trade and market information and connect buyers and sellers from across the continent.
The IATF is a platform connecting African markets and promotes intra-African trade.
It has lined up trade and investment forums, high-level dialogues on medium size enterprises, implementation and domestication of the African Commodity Strategy and a high-point of an African Automotive Forum.
Source: Ghana News Agency