By Michael Okidi – Public Communications
The 16th Edition of the East African Community Jua Kali/Nguvu Kazi exhibition came to a close at the Mnazi Mmoja Grounds in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, with organizers and participants oozing confidence of a captivating show of new and emerging innovations.
The exhibitions, that took place from 30th November to 6th December, 2015, attracted a total of 741 exhibitors, offering artisans from the five EAC Partner States a chance to showcase their innovations and attract new clients.
With the theme: “Buy Micro and Small Enterprises (MSEs) products, Build East Africa”, the exhibition that is held yearly, offers the participants an opportunity to sell their products and initiate business contacts besides clinching contracts with new clients.
According to the Chief Executive of Small and Medium Enterprises Authority, Mr Patrick Mwangi, at least 15 Kenyan Small and Medium Enterprises clinched business contracts with new clients during the one week event.
Mwangi said that several Kenyan innovations proved instant attractions to visitors, leading to new interests. He urged the artisans to continue improving on their innovations so that their products may attract more buyers and higher profits.
Meanwhile, Tanzanian President John Pombe Magufuli, hailed the exhibition as a unifying factor that should be taken into new heights for the prosperity of the people of East Africa.
In a speech read on his behalf by the Regional Commissioner for Dar s Salaam, Mr Said Meck Sadik, Dr Magufuli urged East Africans to buy home-made products as a way of promoting local manufacturing whose quality, he noted, keeps increasing.
Meanwhile, Kenya’s High Commissioner to the United Republic of Tanzania Chirau Ali Mwakwere, hailed Kenyan exhibitors for taking the event seriously, and noted that their growth and prosperity as small scale manufacturers heavily depended on their ability to effectively market themselves.
Amb. Mwakwere, who was the event’s chief guest on the day dedicated to Kenya’s representatives, urged the artisans to always strive for high quality products to enable them compete effectively with their counterparts from the other EAC Partner States.