(21 June, Kampala) The Government of the Republic of Korea through its development agency, Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA), and the International Trade Centre (ITC) signed a four-year grant arrangement (2022-2026) providing $5.07 million in funding to support ITC in boosting gender-responsive resilience to natural disasters and competitiveness for farming households and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the cassava, shea and oilseed value chains in ten districts across Northern and North-eastern Uganda. The grant arrangement was signed by Taeyoung Kim, KOICA Uganda Country Director, and ITC Deputy Executive Director Dorothy Tembo at the KOICA Uganda office in Kampala.
The new project named “Strengthening Agribusiness Resilience and Competitiveness - STAR” aims to increase the resilience of smallholder farmers, women in particular, to natural disasters exacerbated by climate change and environmental degradation in Abim, Agago, Kaabong, Karenga, Kitgum, Kotido, Lamwo, Lira, Oyam,and Pader districts. Producers and agribusinesses can actively contribute to and profit from decisions on how their communities and businesses develop and implement disaster risk reduction measures and adjust to climate concerns.
Targeting 10,000 agricultural/agro-pastoral households and 60 cooperatives and SMEs working in the respective value chains, ITC support will focus on: supporting farming households to increase the value of their production by adapting to climatic risks; creating a more supportive business and policy environment for women producers and SMEs; and enabling SMEs to be more competitive, resilient to natural disasters and increase their sales and expand to new markets.
The partnership reaffirms the close cooperation between KOICA and ITC, hallmarked with ITC’s three-year SheTrades West Africa project running from 2019 to 2023 focused on improving the lives of 10,000 women in the cashew, shea and cassava sector in Côte d’Ivoire, Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. The new funding supports ITC's efforts to link small businesses in developing countries to international markets through inclusive and green trade.
“The arrangement underlines a strong alignment between ITC’s mandate and KOICA’s strategic priorities. The contribution will allow us to unlock greater commercial opportunities for many agribusinesses and small businesses and build on social resilience to overcome climate risks. We deeply value KOICA’s continual confidence in ITC’s directive.”
Dorothy Tembo, Deputy Executive Director, International Trade Centre
“KOICA is committed to a mutual goal we share with ITC, and that is sustainable and inclusive growth in agricultural value chains in Uganda. Based on Korea’s development experience, we are excited to collaborate with ITC to exchange such experience and knowledge with our brothers and sisters in Uganda. We hope that through this project, the partnership of KOICA, ITC and the government of Uganda would strengthen to best support the development of Uganda, its people and small businesses with large potentials.”
Taeyoung Kim, Country Director, KOICA Uganda