THE 51ST Zambia International Trade Fair (ZITF) opened its gates with Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta calling for close trade and investment ties between Zambia and the East African Country.
President Kenyatta has also called for the promotion of young entrepreneurship if the African Continent had to achieve comprehensive social and economic emancipation.
Kenyan President said the ZITF was a platform for Zambia to show the world its trade and investment potential and challenged the business community both in Zambia and Kenya to forge closer links to boost business interaction.
The theme for the 51st ZITF is Prosperity Through Business Reforms and Linkages.
He said the spirit of devotion dedicated to solidarity at diplomatic levels should be replicated in the two countries to continue improving their investment potential.
President Kenyatta said Zambia and Kenya had agreed to remove the remaining trade barriers so that the business communities and citizens could be free to trade.
He said Kenya had relaxed its Visa restrictions which he stated are now only applicable to the airport protocols so as to allow as many businessmen as possible to prospect in investment in that country.
President Kenyatta said Zambia and Kenya’s confidence depended on the two countries working together adding that the current trade statistics did not reflect the true potential the countries had.
“We must aspire to build a robust trade between Zambia and Kenya. Kenya regularly participates in the Zambia International Trade Fair and we would like the Zambian business community to come and participate in our trade fair. The fair is a shop window for Zambian products but it is also a platform for international businessmen to showcase their products. We therefore need to continue working closely and remove the remaining trade and investment barriers for the social and economic emancipation of Zambia and Kenya and the continent as a whole,” President Kenyatta said.
He said the trade fair was a good platform for the two countries to sample their products and urged the business communities in the two countries to forge close links in trade.
“By opening up our markets, we shall be encouraging investment and create jobs for our people. Our nations have much in common and one of them is the resistance to colonial domination,” President Kenyatta said.
And ZITF chairman Emmanuel Hachipuka said the fair had embarked on a number of ambitious developmental projects and appealed to Government to support its efforts in supporting development projects.
Mr Hachipuka said the ZITF was aware that Government had embarked on numerous development programmes and it was the desire of the fair to actively participate in the economic expansion programmes of the country.