…Says the event will validate demand for a Nigerian Consulate in Houston
The President of AIX LLC, the Houston-based facilitator of the FITCC Conference, Linda Anukwuem walked into the newsroom to shed light on a two-day international conference expected to attract a diverse group of entrepreneurs and industry leaders in America’s fourth largest city, Houston. Ms. Anukwuem spoke to WAP’s Editorial Board Co-chair, Dr. Anthony Ogbo. Below is the transcript:
Come October 24-25, the Fidelity Bank Plc. Nigeria will unveil its premier international trade and creative fair themed, Fidelity International Trade & Creative Connect (FITCC). Tell us, what is this event all about?
Thanks for this opportunity. The event is a unique platform to bridge the gap and support bilateral trade between Nigeria and Houston. Nigeria has a large diaspora community that resides in Houston and the neighboring cities which include Dallas, Austin, and San Antonio looking to engage in business activities back home. In addition, the event will bring over 100 exporters in various industries looking to transact with retail buyers, manufacturers, etc. The event will create an atmosphere to do business beyond borders. Networking and engagement will be instrumental to a successful outcome for the event and Fidelity Bank Nigeria.
In addition, the ITCC will take place at the George R. Brown (GRB) Convention Center, one of the 10 largest convention centers in America, and this event will be the first Nigeria-facilitated conference to be held at this convention center.
Good to know that this event will create a path to doing business across and beyond borders. Tell us about the structure – what exactly would participants be expecting?
Attendees should expect the following: tradeshow, panel sessions, topic-focused breakout sessions, fashion show, networking, and B2B meetings. The discussions will feature experts, policymakers, and businesses from Nigeria and the United States to provide a more cohesive discussion allowing challenges, success stories, and solutions to be shared. Registration is very important due to limited seats for the panel and breakout sessions.
In addition, this trade expo will surely carry out the theme ‘Connecting Nigeria to the World’. Exporters will showcase authentic products including but not limited to textiles, food seasonings, and items displaying craftsmanship of what ‘Made in Nigeria’ truly exemplifies. The trade expo will be activated on both days from 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 pm. Please visit www.fitccusa.com to secure your complimentary registration
There is this video of Houston’s Mayor, Sylvester Turner, who just led a three-country trade mission to West Africa, acknowledging the city’s readiness to host this event. What part does the city of Houston play in this event? To Mayor Turner, who will out-serve his tenure in a few months, what does this event mean to him and the city?
Yes, that was a video by Mayor Sylvester Turner detailing the significance of this event and the City’s commitment to matters of international business, especially involving African affairs. Mayor Turner has been extremely supportive of the event and his office has shown the willingness to support within their capacity. The event has extended an invitation to the Mayor to welcome guests and attendees at the Fidelity International Trade & Creative Connect. We look forward to hearing a goodwill message from the Mayor at the Opening Session. We are also dialoguing with the Houston Airport System which is significant for their presence to support their quest to reactivate the direct flight to Lagos from Houston.
I truly believe the Fidelity International Trade & Creative Connect is an excellent opportunity to elevate the discussion and the need for a Nigerian Consulate which has been spearheaded by many in the Houston diasporan community and Mayor Sylvester Turner.
Tell us about partnering entities of this event. We heard that FITCC is partnering with many other entities, including the Texas Southern University in Houston. Any details on this yet?
Yes, FITCC will be partnering with a few local entities including Texas Southern University. The proposed partnership with TSU will allow a working collaboration with the students depending on their choice of study. We are really excited about their participation and cannot wait to release more details soon.
From dignitaries to delegates and participants, who exactly are you expecting here?
Local officials including Mayor Sylvester Turner, Nneka Onyeali-Ikpe (CEO & Managing Director) Fidelity Bank Nigeria, Her Excellency Engr. Tamunominini Olufunke Makinde (First Lady of Oyo State, Nigeria), Benedict Oramah (President – Afrieximbank), Engr. Henry Obih (Independent Director-Fidelity Bank Nigeria), Ufo Eric-Atuanya (Senior Vice President, Global Business Development – Export-Import Bank of the U.S.), 97.9 The Box – G.T. Mayne
How could guests, partners, volunteers, etc. reach out to the event facilitators?
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