JAMPRO Hosts Seminar to Inform Exporters of Opportunities in Africa

 

The Jamaica Promotions Corporation (JAMPRO) hosted a capacity building seminar for Jamaican exporters on April 26, 2017 to explore opportunities for export of Jamaican products to Africa. ‘Insights from Africa - Opportunities for Trade’ focused on prospects for Jamaican companies in Ghana, Nigeria and South Africa, and empowered exporters with the knowledge needed to start exporting to the African continent.

The seminar, led by JAMPRO Vice President of Export and Market Development, Robert Scott, and GraceKennedy Ghana Limited General Manager, Robert Walker, provided insight for Jamaican manufacturers who are interested in exporting to Africa.  Mr. Walker also shared his experience launching GraceKennedy’s brand and products in Ghana, and gave valuable data that displayed the opportunities that are available in the market.

According to Walker, Ghana’s similar taste profile, growing middle class, increase in disposable income and large population makes the country a perfect location for Jamaican companies to consider for export. While he noted that there might be challenges such as the distance between Jamaica and Ghana and differences in culture, he said he believed that Ghana and Africa on the whole were lucrative untapped markets for Jamaican companies to explore. Philip Riley, ‎Charge d'Affaires at the South African High Commission and Lilian Onoh, Acting High Commissioner of Nigeria in Jamaica, also shared opportunities for trade in their countries.

Mr. Robert Scott noted to exporters that as part of the Agency’s expanding export development strategy, JAMPRO wanted to empower Jamaicans with the knowledge needed to enter new untapped markets.  He said that with over 50 countries on the continent and with hundreds of different ethnic groups, Jamaica’s exporters could find a lucrative consumer base in Africa, when armed with the correct information. Shipping of products, a major consideration for persons interested in exporting to African countries, is now made easier through major shipping companies like CMA-CGM and Maersk Line.

According to Scott, “There are several positive indicators coming from the African continent. The World Economic Forum (WEF) has said that the GDP of 25 African countries is expected to grow 5% annually between now and 2025, and that the fastest growing digital consumer market is in Africa. These are just two of many factors that suggest that we need to explore this market on a grander scale to evaluate opportunities to export our manufactured products. As it is a large continent, we will work with our local African embassies and other partners to see how we can get a foot in the door for exporters. This is an exciting opportunity to explore, and we are looking forward to seeing what we can accomplish in the next year.” Jamaica Exporters’ Association (JEA) President and JAMPRO’s Board Director, Michelle Chong, also echoed his sentiments, saying she had a personal interest in the Agency expanding the exploration of new markets, and finding new opportunities for Jamaica’s exporters.

 

JAMPRO is an Agency of the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation. JAMPRO is working to drive Jamaica's economic development through growth in investment and export.

Source: 
JAMPRO
Published Date: 
Wednesday, May 3, 2017
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