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Tanga business community bracing for upcoming trade fair

Tanga Trade Fair, an event that was mooted seven year ago by the Tanga Chapter of the Tanzania Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture (TCCIA Tanga), is still growing stronger, despite a number of challenges.

W ith 30 days to go before the opening of the tenday event, organizers have reported that more exhibitors are being attracted to the Fair including institutions that had previously hesitated to do so.

“This is a good sign that the event is becoming more popular. It’s a marketing opportunity where you can grab more people in a single event,’ said Paul Bwoki, the Chairman of the Organizing committee of the Tanga Trade Fair. Bwoki, a former Tanga TCCIA Chairman, mentioned financial institutions such as the National Microfinance Bank (NMB), the National Bank of Commerce (NBC) and TPB Bank Plc as some of the institutions that have confirmed participation in this year’s event.

He said there would be more opportunities for business men and women to meet and conduct business negotiations in this year’s event than in previous years.

“A business clinic has been organized where organizers will help business to meet and conduct business,” Bwoki said.

He said the event will be graced by the new Minister for Trade Industries, Japhet Kakunda and he revealed that almost all pavilions have been booked by exhibitors. “The TCCIA Organizing Committee would also arrange business to Business meetings and other negotiations,” Bwoki said.

The tenday Trade Fair will be held under the theme of ‘Industrialization is the Backbone of Economic Development ‘ Speaking at the same interview, the TCCIA Tanga Executive Secretary, Charles Hoza said the event has been facing a challenge of mobilizing funds for organizing the event which they do jointly with the Tanzania Trade Development Authority (TANTRADE). Mr Hoza said historical facts on how Trade Fairs get started, were their stepping stone .

“W e know it is a difficult road until people get used to the real meaning of trade fairs its role in entrenchment of business,” he said.

According to available information Trade fairs, industrial shows, and business gettogethers play a vital role in establishing business and to build up efficient contact base.

“partners can gain expertise and walk up on their competitors to improvise their products,” according information made available from the web.

Mr Hoza said they believe Fairs are an excellent way to meet new people who can be potential customers, suppliers can be obtained,and new talent can be recognized who can join the companies.

“Rather than telephonic and web meetings, face to face meetings is dominant to create an impression,” he said.

He revealed that there would be more attractions in this year’s Fair including Children’s corners and local entrepreneurs. Hoza spoke of the need for local Tanga entrepreneurs to use the trade as an opportunity to showcase their products to extend their markets.

He appealed to the eleven Local Government Authorities (LGAs) in the Tanga Region to use this opportunity to show products that have been produced by industries established under Tanzania’s industrialization drive, which have set a target of establishment of 100 industries for every region.

There has been unsatisfactory participation by LGAs in the trade fair for years since the event was created.

Hoza said there are encouraging signs of participation from the councils and some of them have already confirmed participation.

They include Handeni where small and medium entrepreneurs have been participating since the trade fair started.

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Author: GEORGE SEMBONY in Muheza

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