Some foreign and indigenous exhibitors at the ongoing 2019 Abuja International Trade Fair (AITF) have tasked its convener, Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI), on improved coordination and enabling environment.
The foreign and indigenous exhibitors urged the management to enhance power supply, co-ordination, publicity among others to boost the sector.
The trade fair was initially scheduled to hold from Sept. 21 to Sept. 29 but was extended to Oct. 2, in view of popular demand by exhibitors.
Mr Hassan Ellsayed, an Egyptian exhibitor called Ellkarnak Pazar, also expressed dissatisfaction with the organisation of the fair, timing and low patronage, adding that good publicity would have guided buyers even after extension.
Mr Mohammad Ummar, Marketing Manager, WELCO Manufacturers and Exporters, a Pakistan company, rated the fair low as compared to 2018 in terms of organisation, including lack of sensitisation, which caused low turnout of people.
“Lack of proper advertisement of the fair is a very big issue, apart from the light issue. Some customers are also eager to buy but there is no money,” he said.
The Pakistan Company’s management said it has been featuring in the trade fair in the last five years but the organisation of the 2019 edition was not impressive.
Some Ghanaian exhibitors also complained that their goods were seized at the Seme Border, while trying to come into Nigeria but ACCI could not assist them, adding that they only got assistance from Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
The Ghanaian exhibitors frowned at the seizure of their goods at the border, stating that it was uncalled for because they were working under the Ghanaian Ministry of Trade and Export Promotion Authority.
Mr Emmanuel Kwame, Chief Operation Officer of Matamiss Pottery, however, urged the convener to improve on coordination because their experience and hitches could discourage one from participating in 2020.
The Chief Executive Officer of Momil Essentials Ventures, Modupe Mills, said the foreign exhibitors and indigenous companies were disappointed with the outcome of the exhibition.
“The exhibition lacks publicity, we tolerated it, we complained and the management extended the date. We normally pay N107, 000 for a space for 14 days but it increased it to N160,000 to run advertorial.
“Most times the tent for exhibition will be in total darkness due to irregular power supply. It also lacks ventilation.
“I deal on organic products, so lack of ventilation has made my products to melt, this is not acceptable, the convener can do better next time,’’ She said.