NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 17- The Source21 Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) International Trade Fair and High – Level Business Summit has kicked off at Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC).
The event running under the theme “The Hallmark of Quality” will bring together policymakers and the private sector from the 21 COMESA member states who are the drivers of trade and economic development, to deliberate on how to promote and advance cross border trade amongst the representative states.
The event also includes a presidential public-private round table where heads of states interact with business leaders on key strategies to enhance industry competitiveness and formulate strategies to enhance local sourcing and intra-regional trade.
Speaking at the event, Chief Executive Officer of COMESA Business Council Sandra Uwera, highlighted that the forum will offer a great opportunity for unlimited networking amongst businesses, with opportunities to learn what other industry players are doing through exhibitions and business to business linkages that will create opportunities for businesses to tap into domestic and international markets.
“The topics to be addressed by the forum will center on manufacturing competitiveness, and trade facilitation, digital financials services, and regional payment systems, standards and quality issues, smart and sustainable cities and the continental free trade area,” said Uwera.
“The platform will also be a forum to address some of the key impediments affecting businesses in cross-border trade, and will promote industrial growth and competitiveness too,” she added.
COMESA Source 21 will further feature sectoral round tables where sector-specific issues like value for money in manufacturing, internationalizing African brands, optimizing sustainable partnerships in regional agribusiness, tackling illicit trade and strengthening industry sustainability, will be explored at length.
The Trade Fair will further offer an opportunity to showcase the young minds behind Africa’s trending SMEs, who are developing innovative solutions for the continent. These include the digitization of trade and logistics services with an aim of reducing costs, which supports the efficient delivery of goods and services, thereby strengthening distribution channels across the COMESA region.