At least 250 indigenous Ghanaian businesses will have the opportunity to access and showcase their products and expertise in the Chinese market at the Canton Fair this year.
The Fair, the 124th in the series, will be held from October 15 to November 4, 2018, in the commercial city of Guangzhou, China.
The Canton Fair is a trade fair held in the spring and autumn seasons each year since the spring of 1957 in Canton (Guangzhou), China.
It is the oldest, largest, and the most representative trade fair in China on export trade, though import business.
Also, various types of business activities such as economic and technical cooperation and exchange, commodity inspection, insurance, transportation, advertising, and trade consultation are commonly carried out at the fair.
The Economic and Commercial Section of the Chinese Embassy in Ghana, in conjunction with the World Trade Centre Accra and the Ghana Union Traders Association (GUTA) are working to ensure that at least 250 Ghanaian businesses make it to the fair.
In an address read on his behalf at a promotional launch of the fair at the World Trade Centre in Accra on Tuesday, Dr Joseph Obeng, the President of GUTA, said the invitation of indigenous Ghanaian businesses to partake in the fair was a step in the right direction.
According to him, it was an opportunity to begin an even out of the trade imbalance between Ghana and China that tilted in favour of China and urged Ghanaian businesses to take advantage of the opportunity to showcase the potentials of Ghana to the rest of the world.
Mr Kobena Ebo Quaison, the Director in charge of Export Trade and Investment at the Ministry of Trade and Industry, said it was time for Ghana to break across new frontiers in trade and investment as the ministry was associated with the quest to get Ghanaian businesses partake in the Canton Fair which would strategically position Ghana on the world’s business and investment map.
He said governments did not trade or do business and that it was the private sector that had to take the frontal role in trade and investment.
According to him Ghana was the seventh largest trade partner of China in Africa, adding that, Ghana stood much to benefit in a strategic alliance with China and said government was undertaking all the needed interventions to create a vibrant environment for private businesses to thrive.
Ghana, he said, could no longer depend on the traditional export of gold and cocoa, stressing that there was the need to exploit other avenues of revenue generation, especially trade and investment and bemoaned the trade imbalance between Ghana and China emphasising the need for Ghana to take advantage of the opportunities provided by the Chinese market.
Mrs Jane Reindorf-Attoh, the Managing Director of the Accra World Trade Centre Accra described the Canton Fair as the largest trade show in China and one of the largest in the world where hundreds of merchants sourced goods for their businesses.
She said the WTC Accra was a proactive trade development organisation that existed to strengthen Ghanaian local businesses with access to international markets and by building their capacity through a portfolio of services.
The WTC’s promotion of the Canton Fair, she said, was in line with its efforts to provide local businesses with access to import and export opportunities across the globe.
Mr Chai Zhijing, the Head of the Economics and Commercial Section of the Chinese Embassy in Ghana, said the Canton Fair, also referred to as the China Import and Export Fair is the largest trade fair with the largest scale, the broadest distribution of overseas buyers and the greatest business turnover held in Guangzhou, China.
He said over 20,000 vendors and about 100,000 buyers would attend the fair which took place twice a year.
He said the Chinese government was prepared to extend invitations to more Ghanaian businesses to participate in the fair and that the 250 expected businesses constituted the minimum of Ghanaian businesses expected at the fair.