The first Local Southern African Manufacturing Expo (LME), which aims to highlight the capabilities of local manufacturers and, subsequently the ability to export, will be held from May 21 to 23, 2019, at the Expo Centre Nasrec, in Johannesburg.
The expo will be hosted by the South African Capital Equipment Export Council (SACEEC), with Specialised Exhibitions Montgomery organising the event.
The expo will feature more than 130 exhibitors providing locally produced equipment and services of an international standard for identified target markets.
Specialised Exhibitions Montgomery portfolio director Charlene Hefer is cognisant of potential exhibitors looking for value-for-money propositions that will increase their market share and profitability amid economic contraction.
Not only will there be exhibitor stands that guests can visit but also free-to-attend seminars hosted by the South African Institution of Mechanical Engineering, she points out.
The seminar sessions will address strategic themes – challenges facing the manufacturing sector; legislation, localisation and designated products; and the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR).
On May 21, the seminar sessions will encompass entrepreneurship in the manufacturing sector, legislation and standards. Day 2 tackles skilling for the future – job creation and skills development – and the 4IR, and artificial intelligence (AI) and its effect on manufacturing.
SACEEC CEO Eric Bruggeman will present the session addressing legislation, localisation and designated products. The implication of the new regulations for businesses, is that all suppliers in the designated sectors will have to meet the set minimum local-content requirements if they are tendering for goods, works and service contracts in the public sector.
The afternoon sessions on May 22 will focus on how 4IR will result in the convergence of multiple digital fields, including robotics, AI and machine learning, nanotechnology and biotechnology. As new technology emerges and new markets develop, the impact on manufacturing will be enormous.
The need for the expo was initially identified by Bruggeman – whose role within SACEEC is to help initiate contact with international buyers and help promote exports – to bring new networking opportunities to manufacturers’ doors.
The Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy will also host the SA Mining Supply Chain Conference and Strategy Workshop, a two-day conference that will take place on May 22 and 23, alongside the LME.