ITC Fuelling India-East Africa Trade and Investment [press release]

SMEs in India, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda set to gain from strengthened trade and investment ties.

The roll-out of the Supporting Indian Trade and Investment for Africa (SITA) project, led by the International Trade Centre (ITC), will boost trade and investment between Indian and East African businesses through growth in key sectors.

Marking the start of project implementation on 20 March in New Delhi were Sumanta Chaudhuri, Joint Secretary of the Indian Department of Commerce; Yaduvendra Mathur, Chairman and Managing Director of the Export-Import Bank of India; and Sameer Munjal, Vice Chairman of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) Haryana State Council, who joined ITC Executive Director Arancha González at the event.

This south-south trade and investment promotion project is the result of several rounds of discussions between representatives of the business community, government and international organizations from India, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda and the United Republic of Tanzania. The overall goal is to equip East African businesses with the means to produce high-quality products and services that meet the demands of the Indian market and beyond.

‘SITA is about supporting south-south trade and investment links. It is also about intelligently blending development aid with private sector support to generate new economic opportunities,’ Ms. González said. ‘East African businesses will be introduced and matched with potential Indian partners, who they can work with to produce competitive products and services.’

The project targets growth in priority sectors, including essential oils; sunflower oil; business-process outsourcing and information-technology enabled services; leather; spices; cotton, textiles and apparel; coffee; pulses; and various emerging sectors in the five East African countries. Increased exports and diversification of these goods and services will be fuelled by the sharing of Indian knowledge, skills and technology.

The SITA project will also help East African countries to take full advantage of India’s Duty Free Tariff Preference scheme, which eliminates most tariff barriers on imports into the Indian market from least developed countries.

About the International Trade Centre

ITC is the joint agency of the World Trade Organization and the United Nations. ITC assists small and medium-sized enterprises in developing and transition economies to become more competitive in global markets, thereby contributing to sustainable economic development within the frameworks of the

Aid-for-Trade agenda and the Millennium Development Goals. www.intracen.org

Contact: Jarle Hetland

ITC, Media Officer

P: +41 22 730 0145

M: +41 759 829 180

E: hetland@intracen.org

www.intracen.org