International Trade Centre and the Ministry of Trade and Industry of the Republic of South Sudan hold a validation workshop for South Sudan JCTD
Juba, South Sudan - A diverse group of government and private sector stakeholders validated a project to create jobs and develop trade in the fruit and vegetable subsector in South Sudan at a workshop held at the Juba Grand Hotel on 17 December 2020.
More than 30 officials from about 15 institutions convened to validate the Jobs Creation and Trade Development Project. These included Agak Achuil Lual, First Undersecretary for Trade and Industry of the Republic of South Sudan, representatives of the International Trade Centre (ITC) and the European Union Delegation to South Sudan.
The project supports developing fruit and vegetable value chains in South Sudan to increase young people and women's participation in economic activity and provide jobs.
The First Undersecretary welcomed and thanked the workshop participants on behalf of the Minister of Trade and Industry. He also expressed his gratitude to ITC for making the project a reality within a short period and the EU for financial support, particularly at a time of competing funding priorities, including COVID-19 response.
"The project came at the right time when the Republic of South Sudan is in the process of negotiating her accession to the World Trade Organisation," he said.
"For South Sudan to benefit from technical assistance is critical to have built trade capacity and improve competitiveness of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises along the fruit and vegetable value chain and create employment opportunities for our youth and women."
The First Undersecretary assured workshop participants that the Ministry of Trade and Industry was committed to doing everything necessary to ensure the project's implementation. The private sector will be an integral part of the implementation process, he said.
The workshop was organized as part of the inception phase of the project. The main implementation phase will kick off in early 2021.
The workshop was the culmination of a series of preliminary consultations among different government and private sector stakeholders on the project's overall aspects. These include identifying and validating the project's location, target products, beneficiaries, and partners in the fruit and vegetable value chains.
ITC and the Ministry of Trade and Industry of the Republic of South Sudan organized the workshop with financial support from the European Union under the EU Trust Fund for Africa.
About the Jobs Creation and Trade Development Project
The South Sudan-Jobs Creation and Trade Development (JCTD) project was initiated at the request of the Government of the Republic of South Sudan. It aims to increase the competitiveness of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) and employment opportunities for the South Sudanese population engaged in the fruit and vegetable subsector. It contributes to addressing the value addition, competitiveness, job creation and trade development challenges of South Sudan. Specifically, the interventions of the project are expected to improve productive capacities and compliance to standards for MSMEs, increase market linkages for MSMEs and enhance employability and entrepreneurship capacity for the South Sudanese labour force, focussing on youth and women.
The European Union funds the project to the tune of €4.8 million. It will be implemented over a period of four years. It is implemented by the International Trade Centre, a joint technical agency of the United Nations and the World Trade Organization.
The Ministry of Trade and Industry of the Republic of South Sudan is the primary coordinating focal point institution for the project, mobilizing relevant stakeholders across the country.