RAWALPINDI - A 5-day International Rawal Expo 2019 will start on April 17 and all arrangements in this regard are being finalized by Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

Addressing a press conference here on Wednesday, RCCI President Malik Shahid Saleem said that the inaugural ceremony will be held at Ayub National Park.

The RCCI President said that Rawal EXPO 2019 was aimed to increase business activities, promoting small and medium enterprises (SMEs) along with providing entertainment to the masses.

Malik Shahid said that as per Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority (SMEDA), the SMEs constitute nearly 90% of all enterprises in Pakistan; employ 80% of the non-agricultural labor force; and their share in the annual GDP is 40% approximately. Rawal Expo 2019 will provide a great platform to our SMEs to get exposure at international level, he added.

A business-to-business (B2B) conference will also be held on sidelines of the Expo and we are expecting multi-memorandum of understandings between local and foreign companies during the five day expo, he said.

More than 50 international companies including China, Thailand, Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan, Malaysia, Indonesia, Nepal and Malaysia will display their products in the expo. The RCCI chief said that the expo will increase business activity and provide people with entertainment. More than 250 stalls will be installed covering various range of business including food, SMEs, garments, grocery and electronics.

RCCI would make all out efforts to make it a business-cum-family event, the RCCI president said adding, it is an opportunity for the traders to get exposure and display their products and services for potential customers.

“There will be 250 stalls and important thing is that this time we will be having a separate pavilion for Chinese companies,” he said.

Business events/expos are business/social events that could create more opportunities for businesses in B2B manner, it provides direct interaction with the potential customers, creates more opportunities for collaboration and business growth, he further added.

Chairman Rawal Expo Nasir Mirza informed that around 350,000 footprints were recorded last year while this year, the committee is expecting over 500,000 citizens at the expo.

More than 50 companies from China will be participating in the event and we have confirmation from Indonesia, Malaysia, Central Asian Republics, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan etc. who will display their products in the expo.

Group leader Sohail Altaf, vice President Fayyaz Qureshi, former president, member of the executive committee and a large number of traders also present on the occasion.