The Hub has issued a grant titled “Structured design training for regional leather and leather products SMEs in leather products design, craftsmanship and export readiness” to Addis Ababa-based COMESA-Leather and Leather Products Institute (LLPA). Through this grant, the Hub will support 20 leather and leather products-focused small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) from Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania and Burundi to enhance their product design and craftsmanship, improve export readiness and ultimately to attract the investment they need to grow.
The training promotes best practices for international leather and leather products design, product development, fashion forecasting, and craftsmanship. It also helps participants design for an export market with a focus on the African Growth and Opportunity AGOA.
The Hub has identified lack of design skills among SMEs as one of the primary reasons for their inability to access global markets or to increase their competitiveness in export markets. The Hub-supported design training will help promising companies access the global value chain and produce better-designed products that adhere to international consumer trends. Overall, the grant activity will support an increase in global export competitiveness, an increase in exports under AGOA and facilitate new investment in the leather sector.
“We are glad to work with the East Africa Trade and Investment Hub on this initiative to support leather and leather products SMEs enhance their design capability and access to global export markets. It is especially important for COMESA LLPI as it fits perfectly into our Regional Design Studio project that seeks to support SMEs across our COMESA member states, some of which are covered by this joint initiative. Success on this initiative will be a justification of the value of the larger project” ~ Mr. Nicholas Mudungwe - Programs Corrdinator, COMESA LLPI.