The Cross River State government has announced the launch of the Calabar International Trade Fair (CITF) with the first edition billed to hold in December 2016 as part of activities for the Calabar Carnival.
Making this known at the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the management of Tinapa Business Resort and Cliqit, an e-commerce business management and development company, the Cross-River State Commissioner of Finance and Managing Director (MD) of Tinapa, Asuquo Ekpenyong announced that the initiative is aimed at reviving the Tinapa project which he said is not where it was projected to be.
He said: “We have gone through the blueprints, we have identified those issues that prevented Tinapa from going where it should be and we are trying to tackle those issues with a fully detailed plan.
“One of the ways we think we can do that is to have an international trade fair, something that would be around the period when Cross-River would be at its peak in terms of travellers. That is the week of the Carnival in December. We have chosen that date for obvious reasons in terms of the influx of people to Calabar which should be a major trade hub but isn’t where it should be. So, we have partnered with Cliqit. They will be bringing their experience and capacity in driving trade traffic to Tinapa and we will provide the resources.”
The brain behind the project, Gerald Konwea, who is the founder/CEO of Cliqit enthused that the carnival was capable of breaking the record for the highest number of vendors at a fair with a targeted vendor population of 10,000.
Konwea said: “This is going to be arguably the biggest trade fair in the world. There are big trade fairs in Germany with up to 7,000 vendors and there are even bigger trade fairs in China. Except the numbers are on Chinese websites, there are no numbers on Google or websites that reflect on Google.