Addis Chamber International Trade Fairs
Brief Background Information relevant to AACCSA’s International Exhibitions
Ethiopia is strategically located in the horn of Africa, at crossroads between Africa, the Middle East and Asia. It covers an area of approximately 1.14 million square kilometers. It has a population of over 80 million, with an annual growth rate of 7.3% and a population density of 64.1 per sq.km. The Ethiopian people are ethnically and culturally diverse.
Structurally, there are two major players in the Ethiopian Economy; the private and public sectors. The country's economy is predominantly agrarian, which is highly dependent on subsistence agriculture. Hence the economic performance in general is dependent, to a sufficient degree, on weather conditions.
Several studies have so far been carried out to define Ethiopia's energy potential and to develop short, medium and long-term investment plans for the power sector. Negligible portion of this potential has so far been harnessed. The Solar power resource in Ethiopia, however, has a huge market potential in all terms of its utilizations.
Addis Ababa Chamber Of Commerce and Sectoral Associations (AACCSA)
The Addis Ababa Chamber of Commerce & Sectoral Associations (AACCSA) is an autonomous, non- governmental, non political and non profit organization that acts on behalf of its members. It was established in 1947. Since its establishment, it has served its members in promoting socio-economic development and commercial relations with the rest of the world. In recognition of its commitment in promoting the interest of the business community and excellence in service delivery, the chamber has won a number of international awards.
The highest body of AACCSA is the General Assembly, which is composed of the general membership of the business community and Sectoral Associations of Addis Ababa. The Board of directors, which is composed of 11 members, the president and vice president inclusive, is elected by the general assembly for a two-year period. Appointed by the board of Directors, the Secretary General, Supported by two deputies, runs the day to day operation through the permanent staff of AACCSA.
AACCSA provides major services to its members through its different departments namely, membership affairs, business support, policy advocacy, communication & Media, Arbitration Institute , Training Center, Trade Fair and Satellite Offices.
The chamber organizes a General International and two Specialized International Trade Fairs yearly. Thus far, 17 General and 6 AGRICULTURE & FOOD specialized Trade Fair and Two Tourism and Travel Specialized Trade Fair have been organized. In the February General international trade fair, on the average, about 300 companies participate, out of which, about 50 percent are foreign and are from 25 countries. Involvement of foreign companies in these exhibitions is effected through different ways. One way is that individual companies register for participation through their respective Embassies based in Ethiopia. The other way is the Chamber’s overseas Promotion and Exhibition Agencies register companies for participation in AACCSA’s annual exhibitions authorized by and on behalf of AACCSA.
As far as companies’ origins are concerned, so far, companies nearly from all parts of the world except Canada have participated in the yearly Addis Chamber International Trade Fairs (ACITF). Brazil and Mexico are the two South American countries, which sent their companies for participation to a few of the concluded fairs. The German government officially delegated the Marketing and Communication Organization (MCO) to represent German companies and participate in the recent fairs. Egyptian, Iranian and Indian Companies are yearly organized by their respective Ministries of Foreign Affairs. The USA participated only a number of times represented by its Embassy in Addis Ababa.
For each annual ACITF is coined a Motto. The Motto is printed on all publications such as Information Kits, Registration, Sponsorship and Advertisement Forms, Entrance Tickets, Posters, Banners, Trophies, Invitation cards, etc.
During most exhibitions, symposiums are organized on topical and timely issues.
ACITF has many events. The first event is the launching ceremony which is held, yearly, sometimes between the ends of August & Middle of September. About 200 guests are invited for the event, most of them being Ambassadors and members of the diplomatic community. This event heralds the official start of an exhibition which includes the beginning of Registration for that exhibition. Varied Officials make speeches in this event and films of preceding exhibitions are shown.
The other important event is the opening ceremony. For this event, about 1500 guests are invited.
The best stand ward event is the other but most pivotal Ceremony. In this event certain exhibitors are awarded trophies for their good performance in exhibiting their goods and/ or services. Sponsors of an exhibition and other supporting organizations are also awarded. For every exhibition there are cooperative arrangements made between the Chamber and especially the following government agencies:
- The Ministry of Trade
- The Inland Revenue & Customs Authority
- Ministry of Foreign Affairs
- Main Department for Immigration and Nationality Affairs
- The Addis Ababa City Administration
About a month before the opening of especially the February exhibition, a meeting is held between the Chamber and these stakeholders & discussion is made regarding responsibilities of each.
The Chamber’s Exhibitions are managed by a Department lead by a Manager and supported by a qualified staff.
The existing Addis Ababa Exhibition Centre has 26,871 meter square wide compound, while the total in - door area available for exhibiters is 3,110 square meter, and out –door is 2,835 meter square. The remaining area is used for gymnasiums, restaurant, bar, tukuls and administration offices. The in – door space comprises three pavilions. Pavilion one has a total area of 1,600m.sq of which 790 m.sq is path way and 810m.sq is usable area. Pavilion two has a total area of 755 m.sq of which 377 is path way and 378 is usable area. The third pavilion is of total area 755m.sq of which 350 is path way and 405 is usable area.
The exhibition centre provides free of charge security and janitorial services and chairs and tables. It is located at the heart of the capital and only a kilometer or so far away from the International Air Port. It has two main Gates, the one facing the Grand palace and the other just opposite to this. There are a number of bars and cafes near by the exhibition centre. The UN Conference Hall and most of the Hotels are just about a kilometer away from this centre.
Air transport: -
Air transport is an important part of Ethiopian transport network. Ethiopian Airlines has gained a very good reputation internationally in the many years of its active service. Its services include both passenger and Cargo transport. It links the country with quite a good number of cities including Washington D.C., London, Amsterdam, Brussels, Paris, Frankfurt, Rome, Stockholm, Beirut, Tel a vive, Cairo, Jeddah, Sana'a, Bahrain, Dubai, New Delhi, Beijing, Hong Kong, Guangzhou, Bangkok, Johannesburg, Nairobi, Lagos, Lusaka and many more other big cities in Africa.
The Ethiopia Shipping and Logistics Services Enterprise provides Import-Export and Coastal Carrier Services on its vessels. Most recently, the company acquired new vessels to enable it upscale its services in the future. It also provides cargo handling, harbor facilities and transiting services. These services are also provided by a number of private companies.
Port and Railway Transport
Addis Ababa is linked by railway and road with the port of Djibouti, an inlet of the Gulf of Aden. The railway stretches over 925km. Barbara, in Somaliland, and Port Sudan in the Sudan is external trade routes that provide services for export and import trades. Another potential port accessible to Ethiopia is Mombasa in Kenya. There are also two dry Ports, the one 70km away from Addis Ababa and the other about 380km north – east of Addis.
Meeting Services: Assembly Halls and Meeting Rooms
There are two categories of meeting service providers, namely, Government and non-Government Institutions and Private Organizations. The first category, among others, includes:
- Ethiopian Management Institute
- Christian Relief and development Association ( CRDA)
- Ethiopian Red Cross Society
- Ethiopian Convention Centre
- The United Nations Conference Centre
In the second category of meeting service providers are included:
- Sheraton Addis (5 Star) Hotel
- Hilton Addis ( 5 Star) Hotel
- Ghion ( 4 Star) Hotel
- Global ( 3 star) Hotel
- Desalegn ( 4 Star) Hotel
- Intercontinental (5 Star) Hotel
- Jupiter International (4 Star) Hotel
- Sebastopol Cinema Hall ( found within the Addis Ababa Exhibition centre)
- Harmony ( 4 star) Hotel,
- Rivera (4 Star) Hotel,
- Many more others