Enhancing the Access of Agro-Based SMEs to the Regional Market - Training Workshop to Promote Regional Trade in the Agricultural Sector


A Training Workshop on “Enhancing the Access of Agro-Based SMEs to the Regional Market through Trade Fair Promotion” was organized by Asian and Pacific Centre for Agricultural Engineering and Machinery (APCAEM), in close collaboration with the Government of Shandong Province, China. There were two sessions for the Training Workshop: a Round Table Meeting on Enhancing the Access of SMEs to the Regional Market and a Training Course on Trade Fair Promotion.

More than 20 local and international experts were invited to the Roundtable Meeting. Senior EAO/OiC of APCAEM chaired the meeting and delivered a welcome statement. An individual contractor of APCAEM briefed the economic development situation of Yantai, the preparatory arrangement for the International F/V/F Expo, and the requirements for participating in the Expo. Deputy Director-General of the Ministry of Commerce of China introduced related rules and regulations on bilateral and multilateral trade. Government officials, experts, and representatives from select member countries who are involved in agro-trade/agribusiness participated in the interactive discussion at the Roundtable Meeting, through which, selected representatives from member countries enhanced their knowledge on the regional trade issues of the agricultural sector, as well as agro-based SMEs to participate effectively in agro-trade fairs in Asia and the Pacific.

During the training course, professional advice was provided to the trade fair organizers/government officials on how to enhance their capacity to conduct expositions in line with international standards. The training educated the attendees on: how to create a more appealing environment that would encourage SME’s participation, explained to potential exporters/importers the procedures and issues involved in commercial dealings, and assisted them in establishing initial contacts with trading partners to ensure easy access to the regional and international market.

The Training Workshop coincided with the 9th International Fruit/Vegetable/Food Exposition. More than 1,700 booths, from which 200 were from abroad, displayed the typical agricultural products and processing machines from nearly 20 countries. Around 50,000 entrepreneurs and local commercial farmers visited the Expo. “I am happy to see the Exposition become one of the key platforms of regional trade in the agricultural sector and a flagship project of cooperation between UNESCAP and the Government of China,” remarked Mr. Shigeru Mochida, Deputy Executive Secretary of UNESCAP.