Under the Aid for Trade Initiative for Arab States (AfTIAS) Program, ITFC and ILO Partner to Support Egypt’s Food and Furniture Industries

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Geneva, 27 Sept. 2017 - Under the umbrella of the Aid for Trade Initiative for Arab States (AfTIAS) Program, Eng. Nasser Al-Thekair, GM Trade & Business Development on behalf of Eng. Hani Salem Sonbol, Chief Executive Officer of the International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation (ITFC), member of the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) Group signed a Partnership Agreement with Mr. Christophe Perrin, Deputy Director General for Operations and Partnership, of the International Labour Organization (ILO)  for the implementation of the 2nd Phase of “Strengthening Skills for Trade and Economic Diversification- STED” in Egypt. The signing took place during the Closing Session of the “Youth and Employment in North Africa” Conference on the sidelines of the WTO Public Forum 2017 in Geneva. 
 
The two organizations partnered together in 2015 on the implementation of the first phase that has been successfully implemented in Tunisia and Egypt. This new agreement builds on the success of the first phase and meets the request from Egypt to support capacity building of the newly established Food Safety Authority, in particular its training function, and to upgrade training curricula for the furniture sector.
 
On the occasion of the signing, Eng. Nasser Al-Thekair said, “I am pleased with our successful partnership with ILO to work on such important programs like STED.”
 
“ITFC believes that providing trade support that contributes to expanding employment opportunities, especially for young people, is at the core of our developmental mandate. We will work together with ILO to help close skill gaps and increase opportunities for trade and economic diversification in Egypt.” Eng. Nasser added.
 
It is worth mentioning that in Egypt, two export sectors have benefited from the STED analysis in 2014, namely the wood and furniture sector and the food processing industry.  The  newly established Food Safety Authority will require considerable capacity building of their staff to fulfil its mission. In addition, the furniture sector has been identified as a priority sector in the newly launched Industrial Development Strategy of the Ministry. STED will provide the support to achieve growth and decent employment creation which in turn will increase exports and to contribute to the socio-economic development.
 

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