ITC and SIDA join forces to connect Ukrainian SMEs to global markets
(Geneva) – The International Trade Centre (ITC) and the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA) have partnered to help Ukrainian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the fruit and vegetables sector connect with regional and international value chains.
Producers of fruits and vegetables from three of Ukraine’s southern regions will receive assistance allowing them to produce goods in accordance with international market requirements. The project will help companies target foreign markets, with a special focus on the European Union. It also aims to bolster the capacities of local business support organizations (BSOs) in the fruit and vegetables sector to enable them to improve the services to their SME clients.
ITC Executive Director Arancha González said: ‘We are extremely pleased to partner with the government of Sweden and SIDA in helping Ukrainian SMEs increase their productive capacity and diversify their export markets. Our shared expertise will ensure concrete deliverables for Ukraine’s fruit and vegetable exporters.’
The new project – which SIDA will fund with US$ 2.6 million – will help Ukraine’s SMEs capitalize on opportunities arising from the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA), part of the Association Agreement between the EU and Ukraine.
Andreas von Beckerath, Ambassador of Sweden to Ukraine, said that his country was delighted about entering into a new collaboration with ITC. ‘We firmly believe that strengthening the capacities of Ukrainian agro SMEs and BSOs is a key component in the ongoing reforms, especially in order to unlock the full potential that the DCFTA offers.’
About the International Trade Centre
ITC 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 UN Global Goals.
SIDA is a government agency working on behalf of the Swedish parliament and government, with the mission to reduce poverty in the world. Through its work and cooperation with others, SIDA contributes to implementing Sweden’s Policy for Global Development (PGU).