A new promotional book, launched to mark International MSME Day, pays tribute to Eswatini’s entrepreneurs, their stories, and their products.
Micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) are an engine of growth, creativity and innovation. International MSME Day, celebrated today, recognizes their efforts, their value, and their contribution to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.
The current environment poses challenges for small businesses, as they deal with cumbersome trade procedures, inflation, and limited access to finance. In Africa, climate change brings an additional environmental challenge. In the Kingdom of Eswatini – a small, landlocked country – these challenges are particularly stubborn.
But as MSMEs in Eswatini are taking initiatives to make processes and operations environmentally sustainable. Using eco-friendly packaging, installing energy-saving appliances and using recycled materials are some of the steps they’re taking. A few businesses are working closely with national environmental agencies and forging international partnerships to get better informed on global environmental standards.
Group of dignitaries stand in front of banners at book launch
At the launch of Discover Eswatini, from left: Ayanda Nkambule from Women Foundation (WFF), Aleta Armstrong from Yebo Art Gallery, Khulekani Msweli from JeremPaul, Zodwa Vilakati from the Handicraft Department at the Ministry of Commerce, Industry, and Trade, and Mawenzi Dlamini from the ITC.
In Eswatini, the International Trade Centre is implementing several programmes in partnership with the EU and the Government to lay the groundwork for a sustainable future for Eswatini’s artisan entrepreneurs – one where they can operate unencumbered and see their projects flourish.
An important focus is the product-market combination. Eswatini offers the global market unique organic produce, artisan roasted coffee, handmade cultural creations, and gourmet condiment lines. The programme seeks to add more value locally by building alliances for local and regional value chains and supporting MSMEs to upgrade their products, acquire new skills, and expand product and business development.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of International Trade Centre.