THE 17th exhibition for East African countries named Mwanza East Africa Trade Fair (MEATF) has been held with great success and influenced the region to embark into construction of an international trade fair grounds.
More than 250 participants from East African countries, India, China, Indonesia and Pakistan gathered at Nyamagana football playing ground recently with various products and services that made the residents of the area and around come in large numbers to make choices of what they want.
Tanzania Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture (TCCIA) who organized the event was established in 1988 while in Mwanza region it begun its activities in 1995 and by now it has 956 members.
The exhibition which attracted the attention of many people made government of Mwanza through Regional Commissioner Mr Adam Malima promised to begin construction of an international trade fair ground before the next year.
He said that the area which is the centre of the countries in Great Lakes region should have a business exhibition ground to enable participants do their activities better.
He said Mwanza should have an international trade exhibition ground where all issues related to business can be done in a friendly environment, thus allowing citizens to see for them products and services from many participants from abroad and within the country.
“We have a responsibility to make sure that we turn Mwanza into a new perspective because this area is the second largest city in our country and the center of the Great Lakes Region,” said Mr Malima amid cheers from huge group of attendees .
He said that in the process of making the area attain the level of quality there must be international exhibitions ground to attract more people to participate and mechanisms to end some obstacles that prevent traders from abroad to bring their goods on time will be ended.
TCCIA Deputy President, Mr Clement Hoka asked the region to set aside an area for business exhibitions instead of using rented plots that do not have a good environment for doing business.
He said once the government in the region allocates an area for trade fairs, it can motivate many traders to come to the area and do their business without challenges.
Mwanza Regional TCCIA Chairman, Mr Gabriel Mugini, said the aim of bringing together the groups was to exchange experiences so that they can promote their activities whereby agricultural, industrial products and various services from public and private organizations were brought.
The exhibition in Mwanza held in the playing ground located in the centre of the city as it is a place that is close for people to arrive from different places.
Mr Mugini asked people in the region and other places to attend so that they can get the needs at a cheap price while small traders, farmers and fishermen came to exchange experiences and learn new knowledge from their colleagues from abroad.
He said that the exhibition has opened opportunities for transport operators, hotels and lodging to do their business because of the large number of people who attended .
“The exhibition is an opportunity for small businesses to build a network of acquaintances, to add knowledge and skills so that they can do business competitively with foreign countries,” said Mr Mugini.
Mr Mugini said that the exhibition had a slogan that said: “Kiswahili language is a specific pillar in promoting and developing business, industry and agriculture in Africa.”
He said the purpose of TCCIA is to gather, unite businessmen, industrial and agricultural owners to get opportunities to develop and improve their businesses.
Also he added that other purpose is to attract the environment for investment and technology exchange, creating a business network, maintaining relations between the countries of the East African region and creating a competitive common market.
Mr Mugini said the objectives of TCCIA in Mwanza region are to improve such exhibitions by increasing the scope of participation from various groups large and small businesses from within the country and abroad.
He said the leadership of TCCIA in Mwanza region came into power last year and wants to see that various groups of businessmen, property producers, public institutions provide services in exhibitions.
Mr Mugini noted that in order to make the exhibition more productive, TCCIA in Mwanza region requested government to remove challenges facing stakeholders like delay for traders in border with products they bring to the exhibition.
Another challenge they identified is the absence of a policy to make businesses, industries and agriculture join the chamber and a slow pace of the government to implement the blue print.
Likewise, another challenge is the absence of a private sector policy that will solve many challenges they face like existence of several taxes and the interaction of government institutions in the business.
The exhibition which started on August 26 and culminated on September 4 was concluded with the awarding of trophies to the participants who performed well in the 18 main groups.
The Secretary of TCCIA in Mwanza Region, Mr Hassan Karambi announced the winners where in the engineering service Davis and Shirtliff Ltd, Reco Engineering Co Ltd and Poly Machinery Co Ltd all of Tanzania emerged as winners.
The second group that performed well was construction product dealers where Roofing Group of Uganda, Power Mwanza Afrika Ltd of Tanzania and Metal and wood Industry Ltd of Uganda came out on top while the third group in terms of agriculture and animal husbandry winners was Ruthbertha Manyonga, Eagle Kingdom Network Organization and Helena Ernest both from Tanzania shined.
The Fourth Group is Food and Beverage Processing where the winners CPB Lake zone, Nkali food Products and Raras from Tanzania led, while the fifth group which was Health Services Bugando Medical Centre, Ona Eye care Tanzania and Andrew Masoko all from Tanzania led, the sixth group was for handicrafts where the winners CMSED East Africa (Uganda Chapter), Masai Sendals and Black man African Culture all from Tanzania led.
The seventh group is Broadcasting and printing where Konzi la Moyo TV Show, Inland Fm and Tizra bookshop all from Tanzania shined, the eighth group Information Technology and Communication (IT) winners Habari Node PLC and Tigo all from Tanzania emerged.
The ninth group is clothes where the winners are Kifwoka Traders, GR Fashion and Lolita Batiki all from Tanzania won while the 10th group is leather products where the winners Waasili Asilia and Chato Shoes from Tanzania come out on top.
11th group is for training services the winners were Catholic University of Health and Allied Science (CUHAS), Saint Augustine University of Tanzania and Yuhoma Educational Limited all from Tanzania were announced victors.
The 12th group of government departments and public organizations where Tanzania Port Authority (TPA), Business Registration and Licensing Agency (BRELA), Tanzania Medicine and Medical Devices Authority (TMDA) from Tanzania emerged winners, Cosmetic and Ornament suppliers emerged number 13th whereby Arison Company Ltd from Syria, Kim Natural Perfumes ltd of Tanzania and Syrian perfume ltd took the lead.
Traders were number 14th whereby the Dons shoes styles , Ben carpet and Ezy Automotors Company limited all from Tanzania led, the 15th group is natural medicine where Gulu University of Uganda, Kazoba International & Herbal products and Nifo Products of Tanzania led.
The 16th group went to home appliances where Singu House Ware, Mussa Kitchen Ware and Hafidhi Kitchen ware all from Tanzania won while the 17th group is entrepreneurs where Back Tanzania, Maned Products and Koko products all from Tanzania won and the 18th group was for the Central government where the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism, the Cooperative Development Commission and the Police Force won.