- About 130 countries participated in IATF2023, which attracted 1,939 exhibitors and 28,282 participants who attended physically and through the IATF virtual platform.
- The sheer scale of IATF2023 reflects a shared commitment to fostering economic integration and development on the continent.
- The next edition of the IATF will be hosted in 2025 by Algeria.
The African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) has announced that the third Intra-African Trade Fair (IATF2023) held in Cairo from 9 to 15 November witnessed the conclusion of business deals and transactions valued at US$43.8 billion.
IATF2023 brought together representatives from 130 countries, fostering collaboration and partnership in diverse sectors. With 1,939 exhibitors and 28,282 participants attending physically and through the IATF virtual platform, the trade fair emerged as a pivotal platform for connecting businesses across borders.
In a comprehensive breakdown, the organisers revealed that the concluded deals spanned 21 sectors and involved 52 countries. This extensive reach demonstrates the wide-ranging impact of the trade fair, touching upon various industries and creating opportunities for economic growth and diversification.
Networking and knowledge exchange at IATF2023
Mrs. Kanayo Awani, Executive Vice President (Intra-African Trade Bank) at Afreximbank, shared these results during a press conference, highlighting the event’s success in promoting collaboration among African nations. The IATF2023 facilitated tangible business deals and served as a catalyst for networking and knowledge exchange, contributing to the overall strengthening of intra-African economic ties.
The sheer scale of IATF2023 reflects a shared commitment to fostering economic integration and development on the continent. The participation of many countries and diverse sectors underscores the potential for further growth and cooperation.
As Africa positions itself as a critical player in the global economy, events like the Intra-African Trade Fair play a pivotal role in showcasing the continent’s economic potential and fostering mutually beneficial partnerships. The reported success of IATF2023 is a positive indicator of Africa’s trajectory toward enhanced intra-continental trade and economic prosperity.
A significant transaction highlighted during the event was the implementation of the Export Agriculture for Food Security Framework. Multiple African countries, acting as Origin Countries, collaborated with ARISE Integrated Industrial Platforms (Arise IIP), serving as the Anchor Investor.
Exploring new possibilities at the Intra-African Trade Fair
Afreximbank played a pivotal role in this initiative by committing $2 billion. The funding aims to catalyse increased production, processing, and intra-African trade in agricultural products. Moreover, the endeavour seeks to create expanded market opportunities for African farmers and agribusinesses, fostering their access to larger markets across the continent.
Mrs Awani also said that the IATF had successfully established itself as the premier trade and investment event in Africa, with the unique capacity to increase intra-African trade and investment, especially in the context of implementing the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Agreement.
“Building on the successes of IATF2018 and IATF2021, I am proud to say that the buzz and energy generated by IATF2023 will be felt across Africa and beyond for many years. Together, we have explored new possibilities and opened new doors for a brighter future for our continent,” she added.
IATF2023 kicked off on 9 November and included an official opening ceremony, a Presidential Summit, which President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi of the Arab Republic of Egypt addressed.
It also involved a Trade and Investment Forum, the Creative Africa Nexus (CANEX), an African Auto Forum, the AU Youth Entrepreneurship Programme, a Sub-Sovereigns Conference, a Diaspora Summit, an African Industrialization Week and an African Tourism Sustainability and Investment Forum. A series of side events were also held during the trade fair.
Algeria to host IATF in 2025
The next edition of the IATF will be hosted in 2025 by Algeria. The IATF is a unifying platform for continental and global entities to present and exhibit their products and services. Its primary objective is to facilitate exploring business and investment prospects within the African continent.
Beyond being a showcase, the event is a conduit for sharing crucial trade, investment, and market information with stakeholders. It provides a forum for participants to engage in discussions and collaboratively identify solutions to the challenges that impede intra-African trade and investment.
Notably, the Trade Fair is not exclusive to African participants; it extends its reach to businesses and investors from non-African countries who express interest in conducting business in Africa and actively supporting the continent’s evolution through industrialisation and export development.