Advanced Support Programme to Central Asian Business Intermediary Organizations
In the last decade, outbreaks of violence in ethnically mixed Fergana Valley, the poorest region in CA have caused dramatic losses in human life, temporary displacement of people and severe damages in infrastructure. One of the traditional economic sectors of the mountainous countries is the fruit and vegetable production. It occupies a significant share of the export capacity and involves the majority of the population engaged in agriculture. Agriculture is one of the key economic sectors in Tajikistan (TJK). 70% of the TJK population and 73 % of the Kyrgyzstan (KGZ) live in rural areas. 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 the project is to contribute substantially to promoting the growth and expansion of export-oriented Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs), thus fostering the integration of Central Asia countries into the global economy and trade system.
Our strategy to contribute to the growth and development of export-oriented SMEs is through improving the capacity of BIOs and reinforcing their dual role as business advisors and providers (especially to SMEs) and interface between private sector and state authorities.
The high competitiveness of the fruit and vegetable sector, its high relevance for the regional (KGZ and TJK) development and well-being of the population, and major potential for further expansion makes further efforts in this industry necessary and meaningful.
- Advanced institutional capacity building measures for Business Intermediary Organizations (BIOs): Organizational Development; Market entry strategy and implementation module, brand improvement and product promotion.
- Capacity building for BIOs and SMEs on international technical requirements: Trainings and integrated implementation of Global GAP, Organic and Fairtrade; Trainings and information sessions on the requirements of FSSC 22000; Promote the UNECE Group C identification for dried apricots of the Fergana Valley (FV);
- Capacity building for BIOs and SMEs in establishing and supporting agricultural VAC (value added chain) : The North-South Initiative in TJK: VAC for compote mixes, VAC in the South of KGZ and 1 VAC in the North of TJK;
- Lobbying for enabling regulatory basis and improved business policy: State support program for SMEs implementing HACCP in KGZ, National platform for dialogue among scientific institutions, business representatives and state authorities in TJK;
- Building a pilot scientific-entrepreneurial network between EU and Central Asian BIOs: Regional meeting (TJK, KGZ, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan) to identify related EU BIOs; Regular meetings of the scientific-entrepreneurial platforms (SEPs) in TJK and KGZ; Study visit to EU (product development, testing, quality control, state support mechanisms and methods) for BIOs, SMEs, state authorities, universities.
- BIOs specialized in the technical development and introduction of services, standards and innovations for SMEs in Tajikistan (TJ) and Kyrgyzstan (KG)
- BIOs - associations of SMEs, acting as lobbying organizations, advocating for enabling legislative basis and invest climate
- Food processing SMEs (27 in TJK and KGZ) and 6 farms and agricultural cooperatives.
- Final beneficiaries: State administration of Free Economic Zones, Research/scientific institutions, Consumers. Following an integrated approach the project works along the VAC. The direct and final beneficiaries have been selected since they are main actors in the VAC.