SWAKOPMUND - The Swakopmund International Trade Expo (Swaitex) has experienced a decline of 30 percent in exhibitors this year.
The expo - in its sixth edition - only attracted 135 exhibitors in contrast to the close to 200 exhibitors that showcased their products and services in 2017.
Chairman of the Swakopmund Branch of Namibia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NCCI) Paul Ndjambula, said the decline in exhibitors affected many expos that were hosted around the country including the Windhoek Show.
According to Ndjambula, the decline is clearly affected by the adverse financial situation that the country finds itself in.
“We take heart in the fact the annual Windhoek Show also saw a drastic decline in exhibitors which means it is a countrywide phenomenon. We need to do more with the little we have to ensure we create a better business environment,” he suggested.
The current financial situation experienced in the country resulted in government institutions minimising their attendance to expos.
Hence, he says the private sector can play a more active role by joining hands with government to address and find solutions to the country’s struggling economy.
“It is not only Namibia that is going through financial woes. It’s happening around the world. Therefore we as business people should not look beyond our borders for answers or assistance. Let us see what we can come up with, team up with government and see how best we can address our financial situation,” he said.
Swaitex was initiated in 2013 with the aim to attract both local and international businesses to showcase and network while promoting business opportunities for Namibian entrepreneurs.
This year’s event took place under the theme ‘Growing Local Economy through International Trade’.