International Trade Centre (ITC) will next year launch the ‘SheTrades programme’ in Uganda and Egypt bringing the number of COMESA countries implementing the programme to five.
ITC Deputy Director Mrs Dorothy Tembo revealed that her organization has implemented a number of trade-related technical assistance projects in COMESA Member States covering trade facilitation and value chain under the regional integration support mechanism (RISM) for Zambia and Comoros respectively.
The initiative provides women entrepreneurs around the world with a unique network and platform to connect to markets.
women entrepreneurs will be able to share information about their companies, increase visibility, expand networks, connect and internationalize.
To ensure that the system works, ITC has teamed up with Google and CI&T, a Brazilian technology company, to run a tech challenge with the aim of creating a platform through which corporations can meet and identify women-owned supplying companies of goods and services.
ITC is a multilateral agency which has a joint mandate with the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the United Nations (UN).
It helps businesses and provides sustainable and inclusive trade development solutions to exporters, trade support institutions and policymakers.
According to press statement from ITC, in the broader ITC work, SheTrades Chapters were launched in Kenya, Rwanda and Zambia as part of efforts to connect three million women to markets by 2021.
ITC also intends to work in collaboration with COMESA for the implementation of the Tripartite COMESA-EAC-SADC Free Trade Area and the Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA).
Under the COMESA Cross Border Trade Initiative, ITC and COMESA signed a co-Delegation Agreement in June 2018 for the implementation of specific activities to help increase formal small scale cross border trade flows at five borders.
This is expected to lead to higher revenue collection for governments and higher incomes for the traders.