The activities, achievements and challenges, as well as future plans of ITC projects in Tajikistan will be discussed at the next Project Steering Committee (PSC) meeting today in Dushanbe.
The International Trade Centre (ITC) runs three projects in the Republic of Tajikistan, all funded by the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO). The PSC was established to support the projects’ activities; ensure transparency in implementation; ensure that the projects’ outputs respond to the country’s priorities, etc. The PSC consists of representatives of relevant ministries and state agencies, SECO, ITC and the private sector.
Mr. Saidrahmon Nazriev, Deputy Minister of Economic Development and Trade, considers that the implementation of the projects, so far, has been very successful. He highlights the projects’ contribution to Tajikistan’s accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO). He says: “We highly appreciate the assistance and efforts of our partners from SECO and ITC in the process of Tajikistan’s accession to WTO, raising the business sector’s awareness of WTO accession challenges and benefits and the development of Tajikistan’s textile and clothing sector”.
According to Mr. Armen Zargaryan, ITC Regional Trade Promotion Adviser, important aspects of the projects’ activity outcomes in 2012 were: the participation of Tajik textile and clothing enterprises in the international trade fairs in Istanbul and Moscow; a TBT study tour by a Tajik delegation to Thailand; assistance to the Tajik delegation in their participation in WTO accession negotiations in Geneva; conducting a series of workshops and trainings to raise awareness of the local business sector on WTO accession.
According to Mr. Bakhtiyor Muhiddinov, Export Manager of “Nekoo Khujand”, collaboration with the ITC project contributed to strengthening the company’s presence in foreign markets and raising the level of its competitiveness. Mr. Muhiddinov, who negotiated several contracts during his visits to the Istanbul and Moscow fairs as part of the delegation supported by ITC, says: “I have learnt that our cotton yarn is of excellent quality and has a high demand in the international market. We can compete with yarn producers from Uzbekistan, India, Turkey and other countries. I would especially like to mention ITC’s assistance in the areas of quality management and productivity”.
During the PSC meeting, participants will be introduced to the new phase of the Trade Promotion Programme in Tajikistan, which is expected to start in July 2013 and run for 3 years. So far, under this programme, ITC has implemented a number of trade-related assistance projects in Tajikistan, such as the ‘Trade Promotion in Central Asia’ project (2002-2003) and three phases of the project ‘Trade Promotion in Tajikistan’ (2004-2006, 2006-2008, and 2009-2012). The programme focused on the fruit and vegetable processing sector up until 2008. Since 2009 it has focused on the country’s textile and clothing sector, achieving practical and successful results in a sector with substantial problems.
The International Trade Centre (ITC) projects in the Republic of Tajikistan:
– The Trade Promotion Programme is designed to contribute to the sustainable expansion and diversification of SMEs’ exports in Tajikistan by increasing the competitiveness of the textile and clothing industry and improving the quality management infrastructure of the country. Phase III of the project started in September 2009 and concluded in December 2012.
24- Components One and TWO of SECO’s Trade Cooperation Programme (TCP) in Tajikistan. The TCP’s overall objective is to contribute to the implementation of complex domestic reforms of Tajikistan to become a full member of the WTO as well as providing assistance in the post-WTO accession period.