Trade development projects in handicrafts and national strategy to create jobs in Djibouti and Algeria

4 May 2017
ITC News
Projects under Aid for Trade Initiative for the Arab States to boost income and job creation

(Jeddah-Geneva) — The International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation (ITFC) and the International Trade Centre (ITC) have announced two new development projects in Djibouti and Algeria under the Aid for Trade Initiative for the Arab States (AfTIAS) programme umbrella. The announcement was made by ITC Executive Director Arancha González, Dr. Bandar M.H Hajjar, President of the Islamic Development Bank Group (IDB) and Eng. Hani Salem Sonbol, CEO of ITFC, following a meeting in Jeddah on 1 May.

The Feasibility Study to Develop a Handicrafts Export Village project in Djibouti will assist Djibouti’s Ministry of Commerce, Handicraft and Consumption in the development of a Handicrafts Export Village to boost incomes and job creation, including via the analysis of legal and regulatory settings and institutional infrastructure.

Eng. Sonbol said: ‘Establishing the Djibouti Handicrafts Export Village will assist the Government to promote local handicrafts and generate a new strategic focus for tourism.’

The project will encourage diversification of income sources and consolidate the craft sector by providing appropriate methodological tools and supporting artisans in the development of more sustainable activities.

Algeria National Trade Strategy In Algeria, meanwhile, the National Trade Strategy (NTS) to Support Economic Diversification project will provide technical assistance and capacity building to key stakeholders and institutions for the design and implementation of a NTS.

The project follows a request from the Government of Algeria for ITC and ITFC to provide technical assistance for the diversification of its economy and to ensure the country reaps the benefits of regional and international trade.

Ms. González said: ‘The ultimate goal of the NTS project is to support Algeria’s economy and the country’s exporters with a view to boost competitiveness, support export diversification as well as create jobs, and promote sustainable and inclusive economic development.’

Once final, the NTS will contribute to the diversification of the Algerian economy and help reduce its vulnerability to commodity market shocks, by benefiting from trading opportunities and improved competitiveness in priority sectors.

Since its founding in 2013, the AfTIAS programme has worked to enhance trade-led development in the Arab region. The region has the lowest level of intra-regional trade in the world despite preferential market conditions. Over the last two years, the AfTIAS programme collaborated with a range of partners to accelerate the pace of trade reforms and enhance competitiveness in global and regional markets.