MTN Rwanda emerged the overall best exhibitor at the just-concluded 2015 international trade fair that was hosted by the Private Sector Federation (PSF). Kenya was recorgnised as the best foreign exhibitor, with Pakistan and Egypt in second and third place, respectively.
This year’s expo was the 18th edition.
Video: Rwanda Expo 2015 ends with mixed fortunes. Source: The New Times/YouTube
According to PSF, the number of exhibitors went up this year from 307 last year to 408.
PSF chairman Benjamin Gasamagera said the high turn-up made the exhibition one of the most attended in the East African region.
“The visitors said they were satisfied with the products showcased, while several foreign exhibitors said they are willing to open businesses in Rwanda,” he said, adding that those looking to open businesses in Rwanda will get all the support they need.
Faizal Baturat, who represented the foreign exhibitors, commended the enabling business environment in the country, saying the expo gave them a chance to explore the investment opportunities in Rwanda. He also commended the Directorate of Immigration and Emigration for giving them visas swiftly, Baurat, however, requested PSF to move the expo to a bigger location, but in the mean time be more diligent in allocating space.
“The fact that the venue is small makes it harder to book for space every year. You find those who have goods in large quantity getting small space, while those with less getting larger spaces. So, we urge PSF to also revise the booking system,” he said.
Trade and Industry minister Francois Kanimba commended the growth trends the annual exhibition has shown over the years, saying it presents opportunities for more synergies among firms and government to create more jobs.
“The expo exceeded our expectations and we are convinced that great things lie ahead as the Government continues to promote reforms that facilitate trade,” he said.
Other top performers who were recorgnised include Hippo Roofings – best exhibitor in customer care, Tigo – best in the ICT sector and RwandAir the most innovative exhibitor.
Rwanda Development Bank – banking sector, Rwanda Social Security Board – insurance, Ameki Color – manufacturing and Inyange Industries best in agribusiness.
Ex-combatants were also acknowledged for their handicrafts and Simba Supermarkets for their retail and distribution business.
The Rwanda National Police and sponsors, including Britam Rwanda were recognised for helping ensure the event was a success.
Next year’s International Trade Fair will run from July 27 through August 10.