The EU4Digital Facility and the International Trade Centre (ITC) are happy to announce a collaboration that gives five small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Ukraine access to the EU4Digital eCommerce consultations centre. Thanks to ITC financing, supported by the Japanese government, in April 2023 the number of SMEs participating in the centre’s programme of training and consultation activities has been boosted from 30 to 35.
The EU4Digital eTrade stream’s eCommerce consultations centre supports the ability of SMEs in the Eastern Partnership (EaP) region to conduct digital trade and expand their sales. Participating SMEs receive four group training sessions and five individual consultations. The programme helps the SMEs register, list products and sell on major marketplaces (such as Amazon and eBay) and on EU niche marketplaces (such as Etsy, Zalando, Pigu.It, Allegro, OTTO, Bol and Kaufland). The ultimate aim is to scale up for a larger number of EaP SMEs and support a 50% increase in EU-EaP cross-border eCommerce.
The eCommerce consultations centre has been running successfully since 16 March 2023, when the first 30 SMEs began the programme. In April, five more SMEs were selected from the original pool of applicants. These five are local producers and sellers of designer clothes, linen, kitchen assortments, printed canvas, doormats and of biodegradable, decorative, aromatic candles. They already joined in a training session on 20 April, and will benefit from the full programme of activities, thanks to the ITC support.
The partnership between EU4Digital and the project implemented by ITC with the financial support of the Japanese government will undoubtedly help to unlock the potential of e-commerce for more businesses in Ukraine, leveraging digital technologies to help them reach new markets and increase their competitiveness when selling to EU customers.
The ITC’s involvement also demonstrates the potential of collaboration between large international organisations and the EU-funded EU4Digital Facility to promote economic growth and development in the EaP region.