Vol. 4 Num 285 Wed. March 17, 2004  
Star Chittagong

Int'l Trade Fair draws thousands

Thousands of visitors streamed regularly into the International Trade Fair, the 12th of its kind, that began on February 18 at Polo Ground in the port city.

The month-long fair organised by the Chittagong Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI) drew huge crowd particularly on weekend Friday, witnesses said. Chittagong is a city of three and a half million people.

About 20,000 to 30,000 people visit the fair daily either to purchase goods or for recreation, CCCI sources said. The number of visitors crossed 50,000 on Friday because of weekend holiday. It was the biggest fair held in the port city.

Most of the people along with their family members visit the fair. The fair venue was colourfully decorated amid playing of hot music to create lively vibration in and around.

CCCI Vice-President Ershadullah said, we arrange the fair annually to promote local industrial products and other goods. "Our trade fair is really a success one as it was able to draw response from people from home and abroad and our entrepreneurs got a chance to display their products for sale," he said.

" With the holding of such a fair our trade will undoubtedly be promoted in regional countries as some foreign countries also took part to showcase their goods. So its' a good sign for us to boost export of our goods," Ershad said.

The trade fair housed four mega pavilions, four mini mega pavilions, 42 normal pavilions and 400 booths at the Pologround.

Thailand took part in the fair as a partner country and installed two pavilions and 63 booths. Thai products including handicrafts, jewellery, cosmetics and other imitation items were displayed in the pavilions.

United States, Canada, Sri Lanka, China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Iran, Pakistan and India also took part in the fair.

The products displayed in the fair include computers, handicrafts, food stuff, home apparels, garments, leather goods, cottage industry items, electrical goods, ceramics, aluminium, jute and jute goods, cosmetics and other local items.

Mohibullah, manager of a stall of textile goods, said, "Though visitors are seen in large number but all are not shoppers. A section of them comes for recreation or to move around".

"So in our stall we find average sale of goods worth Tk 10,000 daily as we have more competitors this time here in the fair. We had a daily average sale of Tk 30,000 last year," he said.

Kutub Uddin, a salesman of a stall of plastic goods, said, "Somehow we are running well. Our sale is not bad compared to last fair".

However, young couples were not lagging behind as they attired in different fashion with bollywood haircut, regularly crowded the fair.

Meanwhile, CCCI took special measures to ensure security and safety of the visitors and to avert any untoward incidents. Private security men were engaged to do the job.

Some of the visitors were reportedly injured as they stumbled due to poor brick-soling works on the fair ground.

Statues of young women greet the visitors at Thai Pavilion at Chittagong International Trade Fair at Polo Ground in the city. PHOTO: STAR