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Tuesday, 08 July 2014

Italy earmarks EUR 4.9 million for UNIDO projects in the Middle East and North Africa, and in Ethiopia and Mozambique

VIENNA, 8 July 2014 – The Government of Italy announced the earmarking of funds to finance projects by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) worth a total of EUR 4.9 million that will be implemented in the Middle East and North African (MENA) region, as well as in Ethiopia and Mozambique.

An agreement on this was signed in Vienna today between Italy and UNIDO.

Italy will contribute EUR 600,000 to a European Union project in the MENA region, which focuses on fostering entrepreneurial cooperation in the cultural and creative industry demonstrating the potential for the national and regional development in this field in the Southern Mediterranean. This is expected to serve as a first step for further larger scale projects which are to be supported by different financial institutions and promote new employment opportunities and inclusive growth in the region.

Another project worth a total of EUR 972,000 will promote female entrepreneurship for inclusive and sustainable industrial development in Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Palestine, Qatar, Tunisia, and in the United Arab Emirates. It will help enhance women’s economic inclusion and create conditions for a sustainable and inclusive growth by harnessing the potential of women entrepreneurs in the MENA region. UNIDO will offer its technical assistance to the MENA Business Women Network, which consists of ten national businesswomen’s organizations, representing almost 2,500 members. The project will help provide better quality and demand‐driven services to women entrepreneurs to create and grow their businesses and will directly promote 200 promising women‐led investments in the region through training, counseling, identification and facilitation of business partnerships opportunities and access to finance.

In Lebanon, a project worth EUR 855,000 will support host communities in the North of the country and in the Bekaa Valley affected by the high influx of Syrian refugees. UNIDO will work to enhance the capacity of Lebanese institutions to deal with the crisis, and improve host communities’ production capacity enabling them to respond to local and external market demand, while generating livelihood support and economic recovery for both themselves and the Syrian refugees.

In Ethiopia, Italian funding will allow UNIDO to focus on developing productive work for young people, especially women, through promoting micro, small and medium enterprises. The three-year-long project, worth EUR 600,000, will assist the Government of Ethiopia in its effort to create employment opportunities for women and young people through the promotion of investment in the productive sectors of the economy and support efforts to accelerate women’s economic empowerment.

In addition, the contribution to another project in Ethiopia, worth EUR 1.5 million, will focus on improving the sustainability and inclusiveness of the Ethiopian coffee value chain through developing public-private partnerships.

In Mozambique, UNIDO’s Investment and Technology Promotion Office (ITPO) in Italy will help with technical assistance to small and medium enterprises in the agricultural sector. The project, which has a total budget of EUR 400,000, was developed in response to a request from the Government of Mozambique. It will support the country’s Strategic Plan for Agricultural Sector Development (PEDSA), which aims to unleash the vast potential of Mozambican agriculture by creating an integrated, prosperous, competitive and sustainable agriculture sector over the next decade.

For more information, please contact:

Christoph Klose

UNIDO Strategic Donor Relations Unit

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