Belarus will excel
More than 40 exhibitions in 20 countries of the world: let us tell you what and where our country will present this year
Despite the immense external pressure on Belarus in 2022, it was possible to overcome negative trends and reach positive export results in monetary terms. But this is no reason to relax. One of the most effective tools for product promotion is participation in international exhibitions. According to a Government Decree for 2023, a plan for national expositions of Belarus in foreign countries was approved. They will be presented in Pakistan, Serbia, Algeria, Azerbaijan and China. Also, our expositions will be organised at the international food and beverage exhibition in Egypt and the international exhibition in Vietnam. In addition, Belarus will take part in the Innoprom international industrial exhibition, which will be held in Russian Yekaterinburg, in the status of a partner country. In total, the schedule of events abroad includes more than 40 exhibitions in 20 countries of the world. We asked Director of Belinterexpo of the Belarusian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BelCCI) Natalya Kurash to tell us about them.
Post-pandemic effect— Despite various illegitimate restrictive measures from the West, Belarus continues to successfully promote its products abroad. And this is a great merit of your organisation. How are things going with exhibition activities now?
— As for exhibitions, last year we met great interest in Belarusian products. What is important, the world is waking up from pandemic hibernation and major events are beginning to be held in person, just like it had always been. In 2022, there were 22 expositions of domestic manufacturers in 15 countries. This year we are expanding our geography. We are working to present Belarusian products as widely as possible. After all, any exhibition and collective participation is interesting for enterprises because they are exhibited under the Made in Belarus brand, which is already widely known.
We have high hopes for China, which has lifted its entry restrictions. Accordingly, the flow of tourists will increase as well as the number of business visits. We have already received a number of invitations from Chinese organisers for May to participate in exhibitions dedicated to food and agriculture.
In general, our exhibition events begin in February. The main focus of 2023 is the CIS countries. In particular, we are taking the Belarusian exposition to the international exhibition of food and beverages Prodexpo in Moscow from February 6th to February 10th. Manufacturers time the launch of new products, trademarks, and brands to coincide with it. Every year the exhibition presents up to 14 percent of new products. Buyers of federal and local networks gather here — strategic customers of the food industry in Russia and the EAEU countries.
In addition, we will participate in the world’s best food and beverage exhibition GulFood in Dubai. It is the world’s largest and most influential annual industry event that brings together manufacturers, importers, food distributors, and restaurateurs. It is especially popular with visitors from the Gulf countries, since more than 95 percent of the food here is imported. Let me give some figures to understand the scale of the event. In 2022, 4,000 exhibitors from 120 countries took part in the exhibition. And the number of visitors exceeded 97,000 people.
At the same time, we are working in other areas, in particular in industry. These are exhibitions in Uzbekistan and Azerbaijan. We are working on Serbia, Algeria and Nigeria. In general, we expect that the exhibitions will help Belarusian enterprises increase their exports in 2023.
Important partner— So far as known, Belarus has become a partner country of the Innoprom international industrial exhibition in 2023. What will it give us and how important is participation in this project?
— I would like to note that this exhibition is one of the key events in the industrial sector, which has been held annually in Yekaterinburg since 2010 and is the main industrial, trade and export platform in Russia. More than 600 exhibiting companies and about 40,000 visitors annually participate in it. All leading representatives of the industry gather here and demonstrate their latest developments. This is a platform where contracts for the supply of various products are concluded. And the fact that Belarus will be a partner country of the exhibition is a great honour. This will serve as an additional powerful incentive for expanding industrial and technological co-operation between the two countries. The exposition of the partner country is one of the main features of the exhibition. Therefore, our exposition will be located on a total area of approximately 3,000 square metres in three sections: industrial production, industrial co-operation and import substitution. The flagships of the domestic industry will present their best models and progressive developments. As a result of the forum, significant contracts are expected to be signed between Belarusian and Russian companies. During the three days of the exhibition, a number of business events will be held, in particular, a ‘Belarus — Russia’ business forum, the forum of component manufacturers, as well as business negotiations are planned. In addition, a presentation of food products will be organised.
It is important to understand that Innoprom is not only an exhibition, but also a meeting place for people who want to expand co-operation and partnership, who are ready to share their skill sets. This year the forum will take place from July 10th to July 13th in Yekaterinburg, ‘Sustainable Production: Renewal Strategies’ is its main theme. Business leaders and authorities will offer their solutions on the intellectual platform to overcome risks and threats.
Now the Russian market is one of the main markets for our industrial products. Therefore, this exhibition is a good place to show the technological potential of Belarus for visitors at one venue. Three days of the forum will allow participants to get acquainted and meet with business representatives from all regions of the Russian Federation.
The best of the best— You have already mentioned the Made in Belarus brand. Well, what does it represent today and with what products do we enter the foreign market?
— In fact, the question of what we enter the foreign market with is always an individual product of each company. Exhibitions are different. But we, as organisers, choose multi-sectoral exhibitions in order to present the opportunities of the whole country as widely as possible. As for the Made in Belarus brand, we have been promoting it since 2012. This is the best that is produced in the country: from food to woodworking. And at the collective stand one can learn about those innovative developments that are produced in our country.
— In addition to the CIS countries and China, what promising areas are being developed to demonstrate Belarusian products?
— If we talk about promising areas, then these are Qatar, Oman, Zimbabwe, Nigeria, South Korea and Singapore. Also in development are Syria, Mongolia and Algeria. These are all questions for this year. In general, we won the right to be the operator of five national expositions that will be organised at international exhibitions included in the plan of national expositions held abroad in 2023. These are exhibitions in Serbia, Algeria, Russia, China and Cairo. Every quarter we update all exhibition events. In addition, we co-operate with companies. If they are interested in an exhibition, we are ready to additionally work on the same, for example, Qatar. Three companies contacted us. They would like to enter this market. And we help them to take part in a thematic exhibition.
“Last year we met great interest in Belarusian products. What is important, the world is waking up from pandemic hibernation and major events are beginning to be held in person, just like it had always been.”
By Vladislav Sychevich