Export Impact For Good

 
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SMES: CONNECTING TO GLOBAL MARKETS

  • TDS2016.PNG

    TUESDAY, 15 DECEMBER, 13:30-15:00

    Speakers

    Ms Arancha González, Executive Director, ITC

    H.E. Mr. François Kanimba, Minister of Trade and Industry, Rwanda

    Ms Marion Jansen, Chief Economist, ITC

    Mr Francisco Estrazulas, ConnectAmericas Project Manager, IDB

    Mr Twum-Akwaboah, CEO of Ghana Industry Association

    Ms Kanini Mutooni, Director of Investment, USAID's East Africa Trade & Investment Hub

    Mr Andrew Mutuma, President of DHL Express in Kenya

    Ms Amani Asfour, Chairperson, COMESA Business Council

    Moderator

    Ms Sneha Shah, Managing Director, Africa, Thomson Reuters

    Session Programme

    1330-1340     Welcome and opening remarks, Ms Arancha González, Executive Director, ITC

    1340-1350     Keynote Statement, H.E. Mr. François Kanimba, Minister of Trade and                       Industry, Rwanda

    1350-1400     SME Competitiveness Outlook, Ms Marion Jansen, Chief Economist, ITC

    1400-1410     ConnectAmericas, Mr Francisco Estrazulas, ConnectAmericas Project                       Manager, IDB

    1410-1500     Panel Q&A

    Watch the event here.

    Background

    The increased integration of developing countries into the global trading system continues to transform the trade landscape. The logic of such integration is that firms can no longer just rely on being competitive in the domestic, or even regional, market to ensure their long-term survival. Rather is through internationalising and being competitive within an international context that Small and Medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) can become more sustainable and contribute to growth and job creation. SMEs account for anywhere between 60-90% of global employment, and the majority of new job creation, in most developing countries. However, SMEs suffer from high failure rates and low productivity. Evidence has shown that supporting the sustainability and growth of SMEs is an important policy component of employment, social cohesion and more inclusive growth.

    These issues are highlighted in the 2015 ITC “SME Competitiveness Outlook - Connect, Compete, Change for Inclusive Growth”. The report complements macro-level trade development publications with its new SME Competitiveness Grid and based on three competitiveness pillars – to connect, compete and change – the Grid makes it easier to spot the strengths and weaknesses of enterprises. Addressing the productivity gap is crucial for inclusive growth, and in order to increase productivity firms must connect, compete and change.

    These recommendations are in line with the tools proposed by ConnectAmericas, a non-profit initiative spearheaded by the IDB in order to support the SMEs of Latin America and the Caribbean. ConnectAmericas offers members access to potential clients, suppliers, partners and investors throughout the region and around the world.

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