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VENTURES AFRICA – To promote indigenous products and boost intra-Africa trade, the Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA), has revealed plans to establish a “Ghana Market” in Nigeria’s economic capital, Lagos.
GEPA, the export promotion arm of the country’s Ministry of Trade and Industry, hopes to use this means to penetrate the Nigerian market as it seeks greater economic integration.
Nigeria’s 170 million population and relatively large middle-income class, couple with its status as West Africa’s biggest economy and Africa’s second-largest makes it a potential revenue generating market.
The authority hopes to take advantage of this opportunity to achieve its target.
Out of the total national non-traditional exports of $2.364 billion in 2012, exports to Nigeria constituted about 144.84 million, Ghana’s Daily Graphic reported.
GEPA hope to hit a $5 billion non-traditional export revenue target by 2017, from the current figure of $2.4 billion.
“All things being equal, our exports to Nigeria should rise to US$306 million if GEPA is to achieve its objective of $5 billion by the year 2017,” the acting Chief Executive Officer of GEPA, Mr Gideon Kwame Boye Quarcoo said.
Recently, GEPA sponsored about 56 companies to the 2013 Lagos International Trade Fair and was lauded by the Nigeria. Quarcoo stated that Ghanaian products, i.e. garments, cocoa products, herbal preparations, handicrafts and alcoholic beverages, among others also enjoyed patronage from Nigerians at the fair.
Despite the amount of Ghanaian product exported to the European Union (EU), Quarcoo said the authority feared that accessing the European markets could hinder the country’s potential because of EU standard restrictions.
According to a GEPA data, export revenues from the EU stands at $7.48 million in 2012 compared to $1.42 million raked from the ECOWAS region.
The association plans to cash in on the ECOWAS market by penetrating into the region’s largest economy, Nigeria.