Business Women in the EAC to Reap Benefits from Moringa Sector

Intra-Regional Trade Facility (IRTF) partner East African Women in Business Platform (EAWiBP) successfully held a workshop to launch the project Value Addition for Increased Market Access in the Moringa Sector from 25th to 27th November 2020 in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. The workshop included a training for women in the moringa value chain from Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda on branding, packaging, and standard certification.

As a result of this project, national moringa associations have been established in Uganda (Uganda Moringa Association), Kenya (Kenya Moringa Association) and Tanzania (Tanzania Moringa Association, TAMOA) and an e-hub for showcasing and connecting women entrepreneurs in the moringa sector has been launched. Advocacy for the inclusion of moringa products in the EAC Simplified Trade Regime list is at an advanced level, and women in the moringa sector are aware of the business facilitation requirements for their products.

EAWiBP Chair Person, Ms Angela Begaine said that EAC women traders faced multiple challenges which often discourage their full participation in regional trade. “This training is an opportunity to strengthen the role of women in EAC cross-border trade towards promoting trade and gender in the EAC. Therefore, EAWiBP and IRTF organized this workshop at the backdrop of enhancing knowledge and awareness of the women in business towards increasing market access for their products.” EAC Principal Gender and Community Development Officer, Ms. Generose Minani, said, “The EAWiBP project, connecting and linking women in moringa business across the three EAC Partner States of Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania, contributes directly to the implementation of the Treaty for the Establishment of the East African Community and the 5th EAC Development Strategy 2016/17 – 2020/21 which outline the commitment of the EAC in promoting women in socio-economic development and in business. The project engages and supports women in moringa production and trade and focuses on improving competitiveness and strengthening value addition for moringa products for easy market access.” She added that the EAC had developed the EAC Gender Policy 2018 and the draft Regional Strategy for Promoting Women in Business for Socio-Economic Development, 2015 – 2025 to promote the participation of women in intra-regional trade.

On behalf of the EAC-GIZ SEAMPEC Programme, Mr. Bernd Schmidt said, “EAWiBP’s project is an important contribution to ensuring that women in business have relevant economic information at their fingertips and gain access to the skills that grant them effective participation in regional trade. EAC-GIZ supports this project because it is important to provide women in business with all possible opportunities to reap the social and economic benefits of cross-border trade through participation, networking, use of digital tools and advocacy for policies and legislation that facilitate their doing of business. The new e-hub is an excellent initiative for facilitating market access and linkages for women entrepreneurs both in and outside the region for moringa as well as other products because e-commerce has a great potential to facilitate cross border trade. All women in business should make use of this new digital tool effectively and efficiently to strengthen their business.”

The next step following the workshop and training will be to strengthen the newly established e-hub and make it a lively place for networking and information exchange among women in business, not only in the moringa sector, but also in other agri-business sectors.

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