It is dedicated to connecting businesses with lucrative trade and investment prospects within the country.
The Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) on Wednesday said over 10 countries and 500 companies have indicated interest in participating in the 2023 Abuja International Trade Fair (AITF).
The ACCI President, Al-Mujtaba Abubakar, disclosed this at a press briefing in Abuja on Wednesday.
Mr Abubakar explained that the AITF scheduled for between 29 September to 9 October 2023 at the Abuja Trade and Convention Centre and the open field of ACCI is a prestigious multi-sectoral event in Nigeria that continues to expand its scope and influence.
Speaking with journalists on Wednesday, Mr Abubakar said Bulgaria, Ghana, Egypt, Switzerland, India, China, Guinea, the UAE and Syria among others have indicated an interest in participating.
Mr Abubakar, represented by Victoria Akai, the ACCI director-general, explained that AITF as one of the largest trade platforms in Africa, offers domestic and international exhibitors an opportunity to showcase new product lines, access untapped markets, forge invaluable business relationships, unveil innovative products, and stay ahead of emerging trends.
"It is dedicated to connecting businesses with lucrative trade and investment prospects within the country. This trading platform cultivates a neutral and inclusive environment, welcoming companies, trade associations, government investment/export promotion agencies, institutions, and private sector organisations. It serves as a catalyst for establishing fruitful investment and trade relations with new business partners.
"With Abuja's advantageous location as the nation's capital and its convenient approximate one-hour flight from all locations in Nigeria, coupled with accessibility to all geopolitical zones, hosting a significant number of international and local participants becomes both strategic and secure," he said.
He said the 18th edition of the Fair with the theme "Sustainable Financing and Taxation as Drivers for the New Economy," would serve as a platform for businesses to engage with financial and tax institutions and discuss current trends and solutions.
He added that it would foster sustainable approaches to the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).
"The event will showcase innovative products and solutions from our partners and exhibitors in various sectors such as Fintech, tax collection, payment systems, e-health, food processing, and environmental safety.
"This year's theme is centred on financing and taxation which is the cornerstone of any prosperous nation and of immense importance to the business community as it is critical to addressing climate-friendly initiatives, the ease of doing business, and attracting foreign direct investment," Mr Abubakar said.
From the heart of Nigeria, he said the Abuja International Trade Fair connects people, brands and markets with business interactions, discoveries and innovations.
"It will amongst other things provide an enabling environment for businesses to discuss and interact with financial and tax institutions on current trends and solutions, as well as to work out a sustainable approach to AfCFTA and harmonize country requirements.
"It would extensively display products and solutions that are developed by our partners and exhibitors in fintech, tax collection, payment systems and solutions, e-health, food processing, environmental safety, etc.," he added.
He explained that the AITF stands as a unique and inclusive business gathering that welcomes a diverse range of customers to explore and experience our rich array of products and services.
"With expansive indoor and outdoor spaces, the fair creates ample avenues for targeted marketing campaigns, enabling businesses to connect with their desired audiences. Moreover, it fosters a vibrant sense of community engagement through various exciting activities."
According to him, the AITF serves as a dynamic convergence of diverse industries, bringing together a wide array of exhibitors representing sectors such as industry, trade, agriculture, and services.
"It provides a vibrant platform for fostering exchanges between national and international stakeholders, facilitating fruitful interactions between businesses and government agencies."
This edition, he said, would feature a special designated and curated diplomatic space for foreign representations, trade missions and international organisations to present their businesses, economic cooperation projects as well as featured products and technologies.
"Over 500 companies are expected to participate in the 2023 edition of the Trade Fair while over 100,000 visitors within and outside Nigeria are expected in attendance. So far, over 500 companies have indicated interest and we are expecting more. The space is fast taken with very few remaining in the outdoor category.
"Sideline events include; business networking, B2B, B2G, and B2C, special days, raffle draws, virtual and physical games, 12 days of jollof rice, a free fashion runway show, and many more throughout the event," he said.
The 18th edition of the AITF is part of the industry initiative to connect businesses and create a platform for policymakers to interact with the business community.
"We champion the promotion of small businesses, acknowledging their vital role in the national economy, job creation, and overall prosperity," he said.