The call was made Thursday by the chief executive officer of Malawi Confederation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (MCCCI), Chancellor Kaferapanjira, during the official opening of the 31st Malawi International Trade Fair at Chichiri Trade Fair Grounds in Blantyre.
Kaferapanjira noted that local companies have failed to meet trade agreements emanating from previous trade fairs. He said it is paramount for local firms to deliver on all agreements made, which sadly most of them didn’t live to the expectation.
“Working with regional markets means that we are exporting and participating in regional value chains.
“ Lookout for opportunities especially in these regional markets such as Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) and the African Continental Free Trade Area (ACFTA).
This year’s trade fair hasn’t received the pomp and colour that goes with it as no government official was present during the official opening. Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Trade, Ken Ndala, told a local newspaper that this was due to security concerns as advised by the chamber.
“We did not officially open the trade fair because we were advised by MCCCI of security concerns,” said Ndala.
The trade fair was initially scheduled to run from June 20 to 30 but has been shifted to August due to security issues. It will run up to Augustv 15.
A total of 189 exhibitors are taking part in the trade fair. This year’s theme is "Achieving Competitiveness through Integration into Regional Value Chains."