ESCAP Sustainable Development Goals Week 2016: Workshop on using technology in support of Trade for Micro, Small and Medium Sized Enterprises

Date: 
30 Nov 2016 to 1 Dec 2016
Location: 
Bangkok, Thailand

ESCAP is organizing a workshop focusing on using technology in support of trade for micro, small and medium sized enterprises. Through this workshop we hope to pioneer a new way of bringing together government and the private sector to develop an actionable, high-impact capacity building program to enable regional governments to use the technology revolution to unlock regional MSMEs’ potential for inclusive trade, economic growth, and job-creation.
The meeting will (1) conceptualize and develop – in conjunction with private sector partners, trade and development experts, impact funds, and governments officials - concrete and specific development solutions that will help Asia-Pacific’s MSMEs adopt and use B2B and B2C ecommerce and online payment systems–to grow their sales in international markets, tap into global supply chains, and fuel their overall growth and competitiveness; (2) help Asia-Pacific governments understand what policy environment is necessary to allow MSMEs to meaningfully engage in online commerce, and adopt and use technologies conducive to trade; and (3) identify and start driving concrete initiatives and public-private partnerships in such areas as ecommerce logistics and trade facilitation, and online payments, for MSME capacity-building.

Expected outcomes include identifying key components of a capacity-building programme for entrepreneurs and business development institutions in four key areas:
1. Logistics (e.g., including background papers on a PPP to create a new platform that helps MSMEs’ calculate the total cost of delivery to their overseas customers);
2. Online payments and working capital (e.g., including background paper on a new, government- or donor-backed loan guarantee instrument for small export working capital loans for MSME ecommerce sellers, especially women-owned businesses);
3. Policy environment to support MSMEs (e.g., current status de minimis; ways the TFA implementation process facilitate ecommerce in key Asia-Pacific cities; how ecommerce laws can support cross-border commerce);
4. Online engagement (e.g., practical steps needed to engage in online platforms, especially to empower disadvantaged women in Asia-Pacific leverage online microwork platforms).

ADBI, ESCAP and UNCTAD are partnering to deliver a meeting on Trade in the Digital Economy, which will be also held in Bangkok, Thailand on 28-29 November 2016. This meeting will focus on how the digitization of products and processes is impacting the trade-development relationship. For more information, please visit the event’s website: https://www.adb.org/news/events/trade-digital-economy