Middle East market beckons for SA food producers

The Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) is calling on companies in the agro-processing sector to apply for financial support to participate in the Gulfood Exhibition that will be taking place in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE) in February next year.

Gulfood 2018 will showcase a full range of food and beverage products from around the world. The annual Exhibition, which boasts a well-established reputation as the world’s largest annual food and beverage fair in the region, brings together exporters, importers, distributors, retailers, wholesalers, food producers and restaurateurs from more than a hundred countries. Almost 100 000 visitors attend the show annually.

Qualifying South African companies will be assisted through the Department of Trade and industry (the dti) Export Marketing and Investment Assistance (EMIA) scheme with the aim of increasing exports of South African products to the Middle East region and beyond. The objective of the scheme is to develop export markets for South African products and services and to recruit new foreign direct investment into the country.

According to the Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, Mr Bulelani Magwanishe, participating in the fair will afford South African companies in the agro-processing sector an opportunity to showcase their products and services in order to gain access to the multi-billion-rand Middle East food and beverage market.

“One of our objectives as a department is to promote South African value-added goods and services all over the world by broadening the export base, increasing market share in targeted high growth markets and sustaining market share in traditional markets. To achieve this objective, we have developed an integrated National Export Strategy with the aim of increasing the demand for South African goods and services through market diversification. This will ensure that our exports grow, and new markets and export products are developed,” says Deputy Minister Magwanishe.

Last year the dti supported 35 companies to participate in the exhibition. The companies generated export sales valued at more than R220 million.

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