Phnom Penh, Cambodia
For small and medium enterprises (SME) exporters, validated export-related information is a key for business and export performance. Knowledge related to market dynamics, regulations and export opportunities are essential for them to navigate and analyze potential opportunities for their products/services.
“Providing better access to up-to-dated and validated information is crucial for SMEs who aim to start, expand, or diversify their exports”, said Mr. Udo Gaertner, ARISE Plus’s SME Component Team Leader.
Therefore, an important element of ARISE Plus support to SMEs is to provide better access to trade information. Since 2021, the project, together with EuroCham, hosted a series of topical information events of relevance to Cambodia’s SMEs and export, called the “SME Export Talks”.
Each Export Talk gathered experts and speakers from the Cambodian government, international development partners, business associations and private sector. There were presentations, sharing of experiences, offering tips and discussions on various export-related topics relevant to SMEs. Such topics included:
- Social Media for SMEs, conducted on 8 April 2021 that aimed at familiarizing SMEs and companies with the vast potential to grow their businesses, brands, and sales via social media, i.e. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.
- Standards & Certifications for Export, conducted on 24 June 2021 to introduce SMEs to the world of International Quality Standards and Certifications (IQSC).
- Logistics Providers for Export, conducted on 14 September 2021 that aimed at familiarizing SME-exporters with key issues and considerations, when looking out and selecting a logistics provider for exports from Cambodia by ship, land or air.
- Food Safety for Export, conducted on 4 November 2021 that aimed at familiarizing SMEs that are engaged in in food production and processing with the topic of Food Safety as an essential requirement for exports.
- E-Commerce for Exporting SMEs, conducted on 10 March 2022 that aimed at familiarizing companies throughout Cambodia with the E-commerce platforms available to them, both to access the domestic market, as well as the international export markets.
- Certificate of Origin (CO) and Free Trade Agreements, conducted on 7 June 2022 to familiarize companies with the ideas behind COs and how they can provide benefits for exporting companies.
- Export Opportunities to Europe, conducted on 31 October 2022 to familiarize companies throughout Cambodia with opportunities in the European market for various products and industries, as well as the basic requirements and certifications needed to tap this important market.
- Opportunities for Export of Cambodian Fisheries Products, conducted on 1 December 2022 that provided opportunity for the participants to learn more about the best opportunities for Cambodian fishery companies to export, certifications required for certain fishery exports and how to overcome challenges related to exporting fishery products.
- Export Opportunities for Cambodian Cosmetics Products, conducted on 13 February 2023 that aimed to familiarize cosmetic companies with export certification procedures, requirements and opportunities to reach international markets.
- Cambodia Export of Services, conducted on 28 February 2023 that aimed to provide a general understanding of service export market for Cambodia.
Each topic was featured with an update of current trend and future outlook, national strategy and support program, potential markets, compliances and legal requirements from buyers, experience sharing of challenges and opportunities and so on.
By February 2023, the series of ten SME-Export Talks were completed. There were around 937 participants in total who were mainly SME owner or manager, both online and in-person, participated in the events. “Apart from acquiring knowledge on each topic, the participants got the opportunities to interact, ask questions, share their stories as well as engage in networking during and after the event”, said Mr. Youssey Lak, ARISE Plus’s Trade Information and Advocacy Advisor.
Along with each event, there is a topical brochure with related information, tips, guides and recommendations published and disseminated. Access link to each brochure: https://www.cambodia-ariseplus.asean.org/document-library
The series of SME Export Talks is part of the SME Component of ARISE Plus, which aims at the integration of SMEs into regional and global value chains by providing better access to trade information, public-private dialogue mechanisms and capacity building. ARISE Plus is co-funded by the European Union and (EU) and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).
(Photo credit: EuroCham Cambodia)