German Suppliers Seek Opportunities in Côte d’Ivoire as Country is Touted as the Bread Basket of West Africa

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Suppliers from Germany are seeking good business prospects as they target the agrofood, plastics and packaging industries in Côte d’Ivoire and West Africa.

This comes just as Côte d’Ivoire is fast becoming the bread basket of West Africa. Agriculture and the food industry, especially in Abidjan, have been vibrant for years, both in production and processing.

Both sectors also enjoy a prominent regional position as they also supply the other francophone countries of the region, such as Burkina Faso, Mali, Guinea, Niger, Togo and Benin.

The increasing demand for food throughout the West African market and the good general economic situation in Côte d’Ivoire continue to offer positive prospects for suppliers of agrofood and plastics, printing and packaging technology.

As a result, Fairtrade, an annual German trade show, has moved its 5th annual Agrofood & Plastprintpack event for West Africa from Accra to Abidjan, the capital of the Ivory Coast (Côte d’Ivoire).

The event is due to be held from the 20th to the 22nd of November 2018 in Abidjan.

Since 2013, the German trade show specialists, Fairtrade Messe, organize agrofood & plastprintpack West Africa in Accra, Ghana.

Exhibitors and associations have now called for the 5th edition of the event to be held in Abidjan.

Agrofood is West Africa’s 5th International Trade Show on Agriculture, Food processing & packaging, Ingredients, Bakery & pastry and Food & Hospitality, while Plastprintpack is West Africa’s 5th International Plastics, Printing and Packaging Trade Show.

Agrofood & Plastprintpack 2018 enjoys strong support from a number of international institutions including France’s Adepta French Agrofood Association; the German Embassy in Abidjan; the Italian Embassy in Côte d’Ivoire; the Netherlands Agricultural Counselor for West Africa; as well as Turkey’s Ministry of Economy, among others

French-speaking West Africa is described as a rather homogenous market of about 110 million inhabitants, which is growing by more than 3 million people every year. With the exception of Guinea, all countries use the franc CFA franc, which is linked to the euro. The currency facilitates not only the overseas export of machinery from Europe and Asia to Abidjan, but also the export of food within the French-speaking countries of West Africa.

According to VDMA, the German Engineering Federation, West Africa imported 187.2 million euros of agricultural equipment. The main markets in West Africa, apart from Nigeria, are Ghana, Senegal, Côte d’Ivoire, Mali and Benin, by order of importance.

In the same year, West Africa imported food processing and packaging technology at a value of EUR 557 million, an increase of 10% compared to 2015. The Top 3 major West African markets and their share, apart from Nigeria, are Ghana (23%), Ivory Coast (21%) and Senegal (20%).

West African food imports increased by 6% to $14.43 billion in 2015 according to WTO whereas West African food exports rose by 9% to $15.99 billion.

“In the future, Agrofood & Plastprintpack West Africa could take place alternately, in the even years in Abidjan, in the odd years in Accra, Ghana,” said Martin März, Founder & Managing Partner at Fairtrade.

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