(Dakar, Senegal) (January 23, 2017) – Today the International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation (ITFC) and Trade Facilitation Office (TFO) Canada affirms their commitment to strengthen the capacity of developing countries’ exporters to access the international market through the signing of an agreement with and the Senegalese Export Promotion Agency (ASEPEX). This tripartite agreement seals the deal for the “International Trade Capacity and Market Access Support Program”. The scheme is a one year technical assistance program benefitting trade support institutions (TSIs) and Senegalese small and medium enterprises (SMEs) which are looking to export their products to Canada and other foreign markets.
This year long program consists of two components. The first component will focus on a train-the-trainer model with the intended result of an exporter-training platform implemented in ASEPEX and other Trade Support Institutions (TSIs) in Senegal. The second component will focus on strengthening the capabilities of SMEs and their products to be competitive in foreign markets.
This partnership aligns well with ITFC and TFO Canada’s mandate of promoting sustainable economic development through export information, advice and contact, and trade partnership to improve capacity to access foreign markets.
“This program strengthens our progress in enhancing international trade capacities of our member countries. Through the co-funding of this project with the Government of Canada and partnership with TFO Canada and ASEPEX, we are investing in exporter training and international market access of the Senegalese SMEs” reports Eng. Hani Salem Sonbol, CEO, ITFC.
“Investing in people reinforces TFO Canada’s commitment to improving lives thereby contributing to economic development in disadvantaged regions of Senegal” says Steve Tipman, Executive Director, TFO Canada.
“This partnership will empower and enable our country’s SMEs to capitalize on the Canadian Market Access Initiative which gives Senegalese products duty-free and quota-free access to the Canadian Marketplace” proclaims Dr. Malick Diop Executive Director, ASEPEX. “We are proud to collaborate with TFO Canada, ITFC and other TSIs partners to scale and expand our reach in building capacity within Senegalese companies to trade internationally.”
Since its inception in 2008, ITFC has been very active in Senegal with a total financing of more than US$ 195 million provided to the country, in the key sectors of Agriculture and Energy.