June 4, 2015—Egyptian entrepreneurs have broadened their trade contacts and stepped up exports through participation in the U.S. Agency for International Development’s Trade Facilitation Project. Nathan Associates implemented the project, also known as TFP.
“In less than two years, 57 companies collectively increased export sales by $17 million,” said Sherry F. Carlin, USAID Mission Director in Egypt, at a June 3 event in Cairo to mark the end of the four-year project. It officially closes next month.
More than 100 small and medium enterprises received training and coaching to help them participate in trade shows as part of TFP. The companies include makers of processed foods, home textiles, and auto parts. The $17 million in sales were booked by companies that actually participated in domestic and international shows with USAID support.
Additionally, 25 small and medium enterprises (SMEs) received support in improving their energy efficiency. Many of those participants increased their efficiency by as much as 25 percent, Carlin said.
The project began work with private sector companies and export councils on export development in 2013. When TFP started in 2011, it worked with public sector agencies on policy reform. Support included strengthening intellectual property rights.
USAID says it plans to begin a number of new programs in 2015 and 2016 supporting Egyptian SMEs.