Durban to host intra-African trade fair 2021 in November

KZN Prime Minister Sihle Zikalala (right) welcomes former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo to the ICC in Durban on Thursday.

KwaZulu-Natal province is set to host the Intra-African Trade Fair 2021 (IATF2021) – an event that is expected to inject hundreds of millions of rand into gross domestic product (GDP), boost the tourism sector and create more 1,000 jobs.

The event to be held in Durban from November 15-21 is expected to attract direct spending of R 235 million, contribute approximately R 600 million to GDP and create a total of 1,200 jobs.

“We look forward to welcoming companies, exhibitors and country representatives to KZN. ”

KZN Prime Minister Sihle Zikalala.

This is what Prime Minister Sihle Zikalala revealed on Thursday following the signing of an agreement to host IATF2021.

The signing ceremony took place at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Congress Center in Durban. “This is a welcome boost for KwaZulu-Natal as we embark on the reset and growth of our economy as part of the plan for economic reconstruction and transformation.

“In its first edition, held in Cairo in December 2018, the event attracted more than 1,000 exhibitors from 45 countries.

“This resulted in more than $ 32 billion worth of trade and investment deals at the event,” Zikalala said. He added that by the end of January 2021, an amount of around $ 27 billion had been implemented or was in the process of being implemented.

“We look forward to welcoming companies, exhibitors and country representatives to KZN,” Zikalala said.

The signing ceremony was attended by, among others, former President of Nigeria Chief Olusegun Obasanjo in his capacity as Chairman of the IATF Advisory Board and AfreximBank Chairman Prof. Bennedict Oramah.

“The colonial strategy divided us, the show is about breaking borders and building bridges. “

Chairman of AfreximBank, Prof. Bennedict Oramah.

Obasanjo said this year’s IATF will build on the successes of the 2018 IATF.

At this year’s event, deals worth an estimated $ 40 billion are expected to be signed.

Obasanjo added that the lack of information was one of the main inhibitors of trade, with traders not knowing what each country produced and what each country needed. “The fair is one of the practical ways to bridge the information gap,” he said.

Speaking at the ceremony, Oramah said the intra-African trade fair was the key to reverse engineering the “colonial strategy” that had held Africa back for decades.

“The colonial strategy divided us, the show is about breaking borders and building bridges. “

The mayor of eThekwini Municipality, Mxolisi Kaunda, echoed the sentiments shared by Zikalala, saying Durban was ready to host a memorable intra-African trade fair event.

“We are excited about this opportunity as it has the potential to boost our tourism industry which has been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

“We also have no doubt that this event will contribute significantly to the city’s income and create much-needed jobs, especially in the hospitality sector, which lost more than R4 billion during the hard lockdown,” Kaunda said.


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