Twelve indigenous companies from Ghana are participating in the 84th Izmir Trade Fair underway in Turkey.
It is the fourth time companies mainly from the cosmetics and pharmaceutical industries and services sector are showcasing their products at the fair touted as a buyer fair that attracts big buyers, agents and major distributors from major economies across the world.
The objective of Ghana’s participation in the fair has been premised on the theme: “Showcasing made-in-Ghana plant medicine/food supplement and natural ingredients, and attracting investments into their research and commercial production.”
The Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA), the country’s lead promoter and developer of non-traditional exports (NTEs), is spearheading the country’s participation in the event.
The Chief Executive Officer of GEPA, Mr Gideon Quarcoo, said in interview that Ghana deemed the fair an annual world platform where all kinds of producers and manufacturers came to draw inspiration from the international market.
Therefore, Ghana was building on the foundation laid over the last four fairs to expand her footprints in the Turkish market and woo investors to the country.
“It also gives exhibitors an opportunity to look at the technology that exists here. Turkish technology is informed by German technology and so they are very good with equipment and systems for value addition,” he said.
Mr Quarcoo said in addition to exhibiting their products, exhibitors also looked for technology opportunities to get more value added to their products.
“We are trying to move away from an economy that sells primary products to those to which value has been added so that they can command a higher price. That’s basically the mindset with which we have come here,” he said.
Such fairs are meant for buyers that are either looking for larger orders or in need of expanding the menu of items they are offering to their business partners.
The GEPA chief executive was hopeful the country would strike deals for medicinal herbs which is gaining popularity worldwide as the preferred choice, as people lose interest in the efficacy of synthetic and orthodox medicines as well as the side effects associated with them.
The country’s previous three participations in the fair (the 81st, 82nd and 83rd editions) attracted distributor and buyer agents for strategic products such as cocoa liquor, cocoa cake, cocoa powder, shea butter, herbal products, fresh and dried pineapples and tuna.
Ghana, Turkey trade
Ghana and Turkey are deepening their trade and bilateral relations. Its total exports to Turkey in 2012 amounted to US$228,326,000. Indeed, continuous promotion of NTEs in Turkey in anticipation of the signing of the Free Trade Bilateral Agreement between Ghana and Turkey puts Ghana in a ready mode to take full advantage of the opportunities that would be offered by the impending agreement.
Izmir is the third most important city in Turkey after Ankara (the political capital) and Istanbul (the commercial centre). Izmir is located in the Aegean Region, a very important export-oriented industrial hub.
Turkey, an economy in transition into a developed nation, has a population of 73 million and is Europe’s seventh largest economy and the world’s 18th largest economy.
Cr: Ama Amankwah Baafi