World wars have left nations devastated and desolate and after two of them, the world has vowed never to revisit the past and continues to work hard to alleviate any possibilities of wars, because in a war, there is more to lose than there is to gain. The cost is simply too high. Then many years later, the United States declares another kind of war on another superpower economy which was going to send shock waves down the spines of everybody. If World Wars were the scariest event we thought could happen to man, then the next big scariest event that happened is the trade war that started between the United States of America and the People’s Republic of China.
Whiles a trade war had been lit, Africa had begun rigorously with its plan of a Continental Free Trade, which would see trade unequivocally and seamlessly transpire easily between all African countries; a lesson learnt from other countries who have not had the benefit of a large population. Commerce is as important as the oxygen we breathe. Without it, the human race would go extinct.
The topic of globalisation has been most credited to technology in this 21st century but it is easier to be eluded that technology is what has been responsible for globalisation. Globalisation according to Wikipedia is the way countries and people of the world interact and integrate. We are really grateful to how technology has been able to connect the world in a way that has never been done before, largely due to social media which has allowed us to connect to people all around the world.
The single and most consistent form that has led globalization and is still leading globalization up till date is the single most important system which has transformed economies by action, and not just with words. It is that system which was a factor for world exploration, world domination and world transformations. World exploration because that system allowed people to go over their locations into alien lands, to offer goods and services, when they couldn’t even talk to the people. World domination because it motivated people to dominate the world in an entirely new way, not with force but with production and distribution. World transformation because the benefits has been extremely immense for the people who capitalized on them most. That system like civilization doesn’t happen to everyone at the same time, but with time, everybody seems to catch to it. That system is the single most important language understood by everybody, and as a result, comes with its own language of expression.
That system is called commerce.
Human beings are filled with needs and because of that the only means to satisfy these needs has always been for someone to provide solutions, and trade the solutions to the one in need. Commerce has transformed the world like never before and it continues to be innovated over and over again. Commerce according to the oxford dictionary is the action of buying and selling of goods and services. Merchandising on the other hand is the activity of promoting the sale of goods, especially by their presentation in retail outlets. Commerce continues to connect the world and allow people to interact dating back from many centuries back up to the current date.
Understanding who we are as human beings has enabled some nations to benefit directly from serving each other. Commerce is service to mankind. It is therefore very important for every person, every community, every region or state, every continent to pay particular attention to the needs of each other and how to meet them. Since the invention of currencies, the proliferation of trade and merchandising has increased exponentially over the centuries as compared to the systems of trade and merchandising without currencies. Commerce has made it possible for people to amass tremendous wealth for themselves, and has enabled people to transform their lives. After all, the more product and services you are able to render to somebody, the more you are paid for it. The more you get paid for providing products and services, the more you are able to buy products and services for yourself. Trade and merchandising are an endless cycle of human behaviour, something the human race cannot live without.
Africa lies behind as far as Africa’s intra-regional trade is concerned and according to booking.edu, in 2016, intra-African exports made up to 18% as compared to over 50% for other intra-regional blocs. For a continent whose first country got its independence 60 years ago, adopting extensive trade and merchandising is definitely the future for the continent. It is necessary that people are encouraged to get involved in trade and merchandising. Commerce is therefore the future of the continent.
According to toppr.com business activity can be broken down into the various forms as illustrated in the diagram below.
Industry and Commerce has revolutionized the world especially from the 19th century till date. Industry makes the product, and commerce distributes the product. Commerce is so important to the life of industry because without the distribution of the products, the production is useless. Commerce is the link to the customer and so the more the distribution, the more needs are met. The 20th to the 21st century ushered us to the cable commerce with the introduction of the internet. The internet is also changing the way commerce is done. From the mortar and brick style of commerce to the e-commerce, retailers can leverage on the enhanced connectivity and convenience the internet provides to provide goods and services to people all around the world.
Africa is coming of age in her own times, and for the continent with a lot of needs, there is a lot of prospect for commerce. African countries are trying to regulate the impact of foreign commerce invading their territories to shore up the activities of local businesses. A more focused approach on commerce and on educating people on the need to be involved in commerce will transfer the prospects and lives of the people and definitely, the demand for goods will create the need for industry and then a more expanded commerce going across border will be demanded.
We at Sumundi Limited are passionate about holding the hands of Africa as it discovers its enormous prospects in commerce.