Press releases

Entrepreneurship ecosystem mapping launched

31 marzo 2021
ITC News

(Geneva/Dadaab) – A new report that presents a network analysis of institutions supporting entrepreneurship in Garissa County, Kenya was recently launched.

It also provides recommendations for local ecosystem actors on creating an enabling environment for business and trade.

This report is the result of entrepreneurship ecosystem mapping that International Trade Centre (ITC) carried out with support from the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) and the Government of the Netherlands. The analysis of the entrepreneurship eco-system mapping focused on services provided to the youth and refugee community in Garissa County.

Garissa County is located in the Eastern part of Kenya by the Somali border and hosts Dadaab refugee camp, one of the world’s oldest refugee camps, hosting over 208,000 refugees among which 25% consists of youth. Entrepreneurship therefore has an important role in economic development, promoting employment and self-reliance, particularly in fragile settings where there are few formal employment opportunities.

‘We are excited to have leveraged our partnership with ITC to deliver a mapping of the entrepreneurship ecosystem in Garissa, rooted in needs of the market and looking to the future potential for entrepreneurship in the county. It will be an important tool in the work for livelihoods development in Garissa County, and we look forward to implement some of the recommendations in collaboration with ITC’ says Neil Turner, Kenya Country Director at NRC.

‘A key focus area of ITC’s work is to create an enabling environment for entrepreneurship and trade. Particularly in the context of Dadaab and Garissa County, which are characterized by high levels of fragility, it is important to have a clear understanding of entrepreneurship potential and the ecosystem of entrepreneurship support services. This ecosystem mapping report is an essential building block to ensure the economic development in this region. Businesses in Dadaab face many challenges that threaten their resilience, so there is a particular need to focus our interventions in areas where businesses can benefit the most and to identify business support service providers which can help them.’ says Ashish Shah, Director of Country Programmes at the ITC.

The report highlights how the creation of economic opportunities in protracted contexts of displacement can be addressed through market-based and trade-led solutions, in part by helping refugees gain self-resilience through entrepreneurship or formal employment. Such long-term solutions take into account the needs of the market in livelihoods development, including the role of entrepreneurship. Such interventions can develop both the local market and local economy, benefiting the host community as well.

By enabling a greater understanding of the maturity level of the entrepreneurship ecosystem in Garissa County and providing recommendations for future work, the report provides a baseline for entrepreneurship support initiatives and sets the direction for further growth.

The full report is available on the UNHCR Economic Inclusion website here.

About ITC- The International Trade Centre is the joint agency of the World Trade Organization and the United Nations. ITC assists small and medium-sized enterprises in developing and transition economies to become more competitive in global markets, thereby contributing to sustainable economic development within the frameworks of the Aid-for-Trade agenda and the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals.

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