KARACHI: A dozen of local manufacturers and exporters are heading for South Africa to market their goods and services at one of its top trade expos, launching an extensive exploration drive to tap emerging economies in the world’s second most-populous continent, a statement said on Wednesday.
The Securex & A-OSH 2018 is a leading exhibition in the field of security and occupational safety and health. Over 300 exhibitors from 14 countries are displaying their products in this exhibition.
“This was only made possible due to a shift in policy and practical steps taken under “Look Africa Plan” of Ministry of Commerce to present Africa as the area of focus,” Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP) said in a statement.
The TDAP said this exhibition was the gateway for local businessmen to broaden their customer base, engage with existing and new clients in the industry, increase awareness and advertise their products and services, gain access to latest trends in the industry and boost sales.
This is the largest number of Pakistani manufacturers and exhibitors participating and exhibiting in any show in South Africa.
The authority said Trade Commission of Pakistan in Johannesburg had made all the arrangements for the successful participation of Pakistani stakeholders.
It added that a pre-exhibition promotional seminar was also arranged where 30 importers and suppliers in South Africa in the business of safety products participated.
Due to domestic rules and regulations, South Africa is a large market of occupational safety and health related products worth over $4 billion.
The ministry of commerce had approved “Look Africa Plan” in August last year to boost bilateral trade between Pakistan and the countries in the African continent down the line.
Pakistan’s total trade with Africa stands around $3 billion as against the total trade volume of $3 trillion, whereas the country’s share in total trade of African countries is estimated to be 0.3 percent.
The policy focuses on Nigeria, Kenya, South Africa, Morocco, Algeria, Egypt, Sudan, Tanzania, and Ethiopia as all these nations constitute 78 percent of the total African gross domestic product (GDP).
According to the commerce ministry said under the policy the country would offer to negotiate a preferential trade agreement with three African trading blocs – Southern African Customs Union (SACU), East African Community (EAC), and Economic Community of West African States that constitute (ECOWAS).
The SACU states include Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa and Swaziland, while the Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda are EAC members.
Out of 54 countries, Pakistan has resident missions only in 15 African countries including Egypt, Libya, Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco, Senegal, Nigeria, Niger, South Africa, Mauritius, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, Kenya, Sudan and Ethiopia. The remaining 39 countries are covered through accreditation.
Under the policy the TDAP has also been asked to provide 80 percent to 90 percent special subsidy to local companies to encourage their participation in trade exhibitions in Africa and to sponsor delegations to and from Africa on regular basis.