West’s Olympics legacy could trigger trade with African nations

June 25, 2012

West businesses are being urged to make the most of golden opportunities for trade with Africa as three countries from the continent prepare to set up Olympic training camps in the region.

Bristol is hosting the London 2012 Kenyan team, building on long-established links between the city and East African nation through the with Bristol-Kenya Partnership.

UWE, a member of the partnership, will provide training facilities to the Kenyan team in the lead-up to the Games.

To reinforce these links, Kenya will be the focus of the event staged by UKTI, the Government’s export advice and promotion organisation, at the Holiday Inn, Bristol on Monday July 9.

The event will provide local businesses with the chance to:

  • Gain an insight into trade opportunities with Kenya and other emerging Sub-Saharan African nations
  • Get information about existing county partnerships which can create long-lasting, mutually-beneficial relationships as part of the Olympic s 2012 legacy.
  • Hear about the business organisations that focus on developing business and public sector partnerships, as well as promoting the South West as a location for business, visitors and investors to the local region.

Similar events are being held on July 5 in Plymouth, where the Ghanaian team will be based, and on July 10 in Gloucester, home to the Malawi 2012 squad.

UKTI South West regional director Russell Jones said: “One of the key aims of UKTI is to help firms emulate the success of Australian companies which, following the Sydney Olympics, were successful in winning business across the world supplying other major international sports events.

“The sub-Saharan continent is a key emerging market, with healthy economic growth. There are a great deal of business development possibilities, particularly in agribusiness, infrastructure and tourism.”

Kim Chang, London 2012 business lead for the South West, who is hosted by UWE, added: “There is a wealth of business opportunities arising from the London 2012 Games, and it’s not too late for businesses in the region to take advantage of these international enterprise prospects. I urge any organisation thinking about expanding into this promising market to attend and find out what opportunities are available.”

The events are being organised in conjunction with UWE, Plymouth Ghana Link, Bristol-Kenya Partnership, Sport Malawi and other partners including Kourage Athletics, South West law firm Foot Anstey, Bristol accountants Smith & Williamson and the Local Enterprise Partnerships.

Contracts worth more than £12m have already been son by South West firms for work at the Olympic Park in East London contracts, including Bristol-based civil and structural engineering firm Fenton Holloway, which has designed the shell membrane and steel frame of the 11,000 sq m Olympic Basketball Arena – the biggest temporary structure of its kind in the world.

To find out more or to book a place at the UKTI events email rbi@uwe.ac.uk or visit www.teamsouthwest.co.uk/business/business_events.aspx

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