Regional Integration and Capacity Building
to Boost Agribusiness MSMEs Competitiveness and Trade Promotion in Central Asia
Despite the recent economic growth of Central Asia (CA), there is a high need for a more sustainable and inclusive growth model, overcoming main challenges connected to governance, connectivity and export promotion, access to finance and skill gaps.
Important traditional economic sectors of the mountainous countries are the fruit, vegetable and livestock production. They occupy a significant share of the export capacity and involve the majority of the population engaged in agriculture. Despite the measures taken by the governments, CA countries still face certain obstacles on the way to economic growth. The entrepreneurial and investment climate is limited by the legislative framework, which is incomplete and overly complicated. The proposed project aims to generate sustainable and inclusive growth. We believe that regional integration and sound business development with innovative know-how accelerates growth and helps overcome poverty and unemployment.
The overall objective of this project is to contribute substantially to promoting the growth and expansion of agribusiness MSMEs in Tajikistan (TJK), Kyrgyzstan (KGZ), Uzbekistan (UZB) and Kazakhstan (KAZ), thus fostering the integration of Central Asia countries in the global trade. At least 50 Business Intermediary Organisations (BIOs) in Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan are empowered to promote and sustainably support an enabling environment for 150 agribusiness MSMEs, focussing on the promotion of intra-regional & international trade.
To achieve this, the project will consolidate capacities of BIOs and MSMEs, active in the agribusinesses, in
- commercial quality standards
- food safety and traceability
- product promotion
- clustering & interaction of business and science and
- knowledge management.
Our activities are based on four pillars:
1. Commercial quality standards: Trainings in commercial (UNECE) quality systems and inspection; Pilot introduction of commercial quality management systems in 16 MSMEs; Guidelines for inspection in compliance with UNECE standards Meetings of the Central Asia Regional Working Group on promotion of commercial standards (CAWG) and the 4 National Technical Groups; 8 sets of explanatory publications on quality
2. Food safety & traceability Regional BIO lobbying initiative for harmonization of legislations in compliance with Global GAP; Regional BIO lobbying initiative for simplified customs procedures to speed up transportation of perishable products; Launch state supported financial schemes for MSMEs, which introduce food safety systems; Capacity building in Global GAP in livestock; Capacity building in Integrated Quality Management System (IQMS)
3. Market development and product promotion Pilot financial preference for MSMEs, which produce and sell local agriproducts in KGZ; Synopsis of existing market analyses; Workshop for elaboration of roadmaps for MSMEs market entries (applying Business Simulation „Global Strategy“); Guidelines for promotion campaign of CA products in potential markets & demo-case in EU
4. Geographical Indication Workshops to identify potential national GIs; Feasibility Study of identified GIs; Piloting selected national GIs; Regional conference on GI; Public awareness raising;
5. Clustering Capacity building in cluster approach; Study Tour in EU; Regional exchange visits of scientific-entrepreneurial platforms (SEP) ; Develop & promote a Methodology of SEP based on cluster approach to relevant ministries in TJK & KGZ; Pilot internships for 60 last year students in MSMEs, incl. entrepreneurial course, facilitated by SEP in TJK & KGZ & Assessment of replication in UZB & KAZ
- At least 50 BIOs in TJK, KGZ, UZB, and KAZ, specialized in technical advice and service provision for MSMEs, as well as associations, acting as lobbying organizations;
- At least 150 MSMEs in TJK, KGZ, UZB, and KAZ, in the sectors of agribusinesses & food processing (mainly fruits & vegetables and meat & milk)
- At least 60 last year students (pilot groups) in TJK and KGZ
- Relevant national and local authorities and institutions, research/scientific institutions, consumers, farmers and cooperatives, families of TG members
This project is supported by