‘Smoothening the way back to growth’
Commitment for capacity development in trade logistics from key partners in Sierra Leone, Guinee and Liberia was established during a visit to the countries by EVO-Fenedex, STC NESTRA and PBLQ last month.
A next step as follow up of the trade mission statement made by minister Ploumen to support these countries on the way back to growth. STC NESTRA, PBLQ and EVO-Fenedex conclude this after discussing outlines for this support with major stakeholders.
Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinee are recovering from the standstill caused by the ebola crisis. The countries realize that now it is time to invest in the economy and capacity development.
Trade facilitation and logistics are back on the priority lists to reach an upswing. During our inception mission officials from both the private and public sector embraced the idea to work on capacity development on what we started to call trade logistics.
Our counterparts imprinted on us the challenges they face when bringing goods into or out of the country from/to for example the Netherlands. These challenges can roughly be divided in infrastructural restraints, lack of the knowledge and harmonization of procedures and information and the differences between the formal and informal economy.
Governments and private sector have engaged in agenda setting and established trade facilitation forums to promote further development of supply chains including all partners. Their success is important to improve their competitive advantage for import and export, thus leading to sustainable growth and a win-win situation for all. Different development partners are supporting these efforts.
The Dutch Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade has made true on her promise last year to support these countries with capacity development. Following the inception mission of STC NESTRA, PBLQ and EVO-Fenedex, focus on trade logistics is identified as a niche both welcomed by local public and private sector and international initiatives.
STC NESTRA, PBLQ and EVO-Fenedex have started the development of tailor made training programs with the intention to certify these together with local stakeholders. Whilst the project financed by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs gives an initial impulse these training modules can be sustained afterwards by local actors.
This artricle was written by Peter van Rheenen (EVO-Fenedex), René Meeuws, Sandra van Putten (STC NESTRA) and Nathan Ducastel (PBLQ).