Global expo targets millions for FDI
by Kabelo Seitshiro
The annual international global business to business Global Expo Botswana (GEB) 2012 this year returns with the aim to increase the country’s Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), says the Head of Botswana Export Development and Investment Authority, BEDIA Portfolio, Lameck Nthekela.
He said the major objectives of the global expo are to stimulate entrepreneurship locally, to promote joint venture partnerships. He added that the annual business event promotes exports of locally manufactured goods and services as well as promoting trade, including imports to Botswana.
Nthekela revealed that since 2006, the past performance of the global expo in terms of exhibitors grew from 107 to 182. Amongst other success factors of the last expo, Nthekela stated that 182 exhibitors were drawn from countries such as Brazil, Pakistan, South Africa, Germany and Australia to mention a few. He pointed out that over 5000 visitors did turn up last year.
“We are happy to highlight that over P80 million worth of business was generated,” he said.
He added that it is also for the businesses operating on a larger scale though they normally have small business exhibitors who want to grow their businesses. Nthekela further stated that GEB 2012 target is over P90 million and added that so far there has been a positive response from the global business community.
Nthekela further said that the global expo is different from the recently held consumer fair as it is more business oriented, while the consumer fair is driven by the market. He pointed out that the Expo is mainly for fostering long-term partnerships and sharing of skills and ideas as exhibitors are given a chance to showcase their products and services without the option of selling, until the last day.
“There will be trade workshops, investment forum, buyer-seller meetings in order to add value to the exhibition. Also there is multifaceted advertising campaign in place as well as direct selling,” said Nthekela.
The Head of BEDIA portfolio, which recently merged with IFSC, also pointed out that the expo is for business-oriented individuals who want to market and advertise their products and services for long-term benefit. He maintained that global expo Botswana is Botswana's only international business-to-business exhibition.
BITC interim spokesperson Kungo Lentswe said the Expo is scheduled for November 21-24 at Botswana Conference and Exhibition Center at Fairgrounds. She stated that the theme for GEB 2012 is ‘Fostering Economic Diversification, Skills and Entrepreneurship’.