SWAiTEX kicks off

This year’s expo focus on intra-regional trade and economic integration.

09 October 2019 | Business

Sven Thieme; President, NCCI; “Namibia will be a winner if we can become and remain competitive as a nation and as an economy”.

Swakopmund • Adolf Kaure

The Namibia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NCCI) 2019 Swakopmund International Trade Expo (SWAiTEX) was launched at The Dome in Swakopmund on Wednesday.

The expo takes place from 9 to 12 October and is being hosted under the theme “Promoting Intra-Regional Trade and Economic Integration”.

Speaking at the launch, NCCI president Sven Thieme said that the theme is a reflection of the economic and business journey the country is pursuing to turn around the direction of wealth creation for all Namibians.

“As many of you may know, Cabinet on 3 September directed that the Ministry of Trade, Industrialisation and SME Development consult with the private sector on the implementation of the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (aCFTA). With the creation of an expanded market through the free trade area within SADC and aCFTA, the Namibian business sector is challenged to use the opportunities created by this development,” Thieme said.

He added that he challenge Namibia faces today is that we have too few products to offer to the market. “Our economy can only derive benefits if we can offer more products. Namibia will be a winner if we can become and remain competitive as a nation and as an economy. We have no doubt that we can become not only the most competitive economy in the world in terms of our attractiveness to investors, but the easiest country to do business in,” Thieme said.

Also speaking at the launch, the Deputy Minister of Trade, Industrialisation and SME Development, Lucia Iipumbu, said that government is keen to partner with the private sector in its quest to bring prosperity to the people through employment creation. “I am confident that if we match our talk with real action, through combined efforts, we can increase the level and quality of investment and employment in the Swakopmund community, the Erongo region and Namibia as a whole,” she said.

Iipumbu said that expos like SWAiTEX are an effective way for companies to market their products, and that it will continue to serve as an effective platform for exhibitors to promote their products not only to the local market but also to other countries, especially those in the region.

“I am delighted to note the encouraging international participation in this event and would like to urge the NCCI to continue promoting the event to see an increasing number of foreign exhibitors,” she said.

An estimated 120 stalls are part of this year’s SWAiTEX, which is being held in Swakopmund for the seventh time.