By NBF News

By Franklin Alli
RIVERS State Ministry of Commerce and Industry, is set to unfold the maiden edition of its Christmas Discount Market Fair, next weekend in Port Harcourt.

The event will hold at the Liberation Stadium and would be on for 30 days. Already, multinational corporations like PZ Cussons, Seven-Up Bottling Company PLC, including a handful of small businesses have queued for participation in the project.

In a meeting with Strategic Partners in Lagos, the State's Commissioner for Commerce and Industry, Chuma Chinye, said that the State Governor, Chibuike Amaechi, has approved the hosting of the maiden edition of the fair, stressing: ' it's to palliate the seasonal inflation that characterises festive periods in the State. According to him, every Christmas season, indigenes and residents of Rivers State brace up for rising prices of consumers goods.

'During this period, the income of residents does not increase, yet naturally they are bound to increase the purchase of these items. From the foregoing, the Governor thought that we should look at what should be done to bring down the prices of goods at the Christmas period.

'Instead of throwing money at the problem, we decided to borrow the concept of discount market fairs from abroad and domesticate it here. We don't have discount market in Nigeria. In Atlanta, there are three discount markets, and Paris, also have Fashion Discount Market. We want to have a permanent discount market in Nigeria with Port Harcourt as the destination.'

He further said that t there is no financial involvement on the parts of companies coming to exhibit their products at the fair.

'They should just bring their products and exhibit. We will provide free pavilions at no cost to exhibitors; however, participating companies are to brand their pavilions to their taste and are required to sell their products at discounted rates lower than prevailing market prices.'