In the bid to operationalize the regional industrial and private sector strategy, 16 national business environment experts were recruited. These experts were involved in the collection of data on buyers and sellers in WACOMP’s selected value chains, Business Support Organizations (BSOs), Business Training Institutions and Public-Private Partnership’ stakeholders/ projects in each member state. This activity was done between the period of 7 months.
Within this period, Terms of Reference was published for external support in implementing 2 Business to Business networking events called “Meet the Buyers”. The events will mainly focus on the 3 selected value chains chosen at the regional level. Also, the main target of these events is to interact with relevant procurement managers of large ECOWAS companies, Multinational companies, and various MSME representatives.
The terms of reference include
- Task 1: Establishing a clear WACOMP “Meet the Buyers” identity.
- Task 2: Planning and conducting information-gathering events with the procurement managers of large national companies and MNCs in the selected value chains.
- Task 3: Elaborating guidelines for effectively linking ECOWAS MSMEs to large ECOWAS companies and MNCs in the selected value chains.
- Task 4: Planning, organizing and delivering two networking events for the relevant procurement managers of large ECOWAS companies, MNCs and representatives of MSMEs.
- Task 5: Developing an MSME supplier database with profiles of MSMEs in the database.
- Task 6: Capacity building of BSOs to enable them to host further networking events after the finalization of the project to ensure sustainability.
- Task 7: Defining policy recommendations based on lessons learned from this sub-component.
So far, two suitable bids have been identified and from meetings between ITC and UNIDO which took place on the 24th and 25th September 2019, there was an agreement to jointly organise the networking events.
The first event is planned for Q2/Q3 2020, and the second event for Q2/Q3 2021.
Meeting of the CTA and Technical Associate expert with the Nigerian business environment expert.