The National SME Products Fair 2020 is set to start in the capital today aiming to promote homemade products and generate jobs.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is scheduled to inaugurate the 9-day fair at the Krishibid Institution Bangladesh, said Industries Minister Nurul Majid Mahmud Humayun at a press conference at the auditorium of the SME Foundation on Monday.
The foundation is organising the fair at the Bangabandhu International Conference Centre.
A total of 296 small and medium enterprises (SMEs) will showcase their products in 309 stalls. Of them, 195 are owned by women and 101 by men, said Humayun.
No foreign entities are allowed to showcase products at the fair, he added.
Local SME entrepreneurs will showcase products, including jute goods, agriculture, food and leather products, electronics and electrical items, plastics and synthetic goods, IT products and handicrafts.
Three male and two female SME entrepreneurs will be awarded the "National SME Entrepreneurs Award-2020" for their outstanding contribution in the sector at the inaugural ceremony, according to a statement.
Several seminars will be organised at the fair. They include: Light Engineering: product of the year 2020 and its potential in national development; Increasing sale of SME products through online platform; Participation of women SME entrepreneurs in export trade: Potential and Challenge; Digital Financing for SMEs; and Role of SMEs in achieving Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Bangladesh.
The fair is open to visitors from 10am to 8pm.
Industries Secretary Md Abdul Halim and SME Foundation Managing Director Md Shafiqul Islam were present at the press conference.
Products worth Tk 16.93 crore were sold and SMEs received orders worth around Tk 30.12 crore in the last seven SME fairs. Products worth Tk 9.16 crore were sold and entrepreneurs received Tk 6.44 crore orders in the regional SME fairs held in 23 districts in 2018-19, the statement added.