ITC held successful Small Business Week at Expo 2020 Dubai
The International Trade Centre’s Small Business Week at Expo 2020 Dubai, raised awareness of the role of small business in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.
A series of events at the United Nations Hub featured renowned speakers, experts, entrepreneurs with their human stories and projects focused on trade for development.
The exhibition ‘Small Businesses for the SDGs’ offered visitors a photographic journey through small businesses operating in many developing countries with ITC’s support. Former United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon visited the exhibition and expressed great interest in the contribution of small businesses to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The Small Business Week programme explored latest trends in sustainable coffee production and trade; digital trade and opportunities for young entrepreneurs; sports for development and entrepreneurship; trade and the Sustainable Development Goals; investing in women entrepreneurs; and regional integration through the African Continental Free Trade Area.
The Small Business Week provided an important opportunity to strengthen partnerships with stakeholders from the region and beyond, to highlight topics relevant to the region in line with ITC’s strategic priorities, and to raise ITC’s profile within the United Nations system.
The panel discussion ‘Investing in women entrepreneurs: The Added Value’ was co-hosted by ITC Executive Director Pamela Coke-Hamilton and the International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation’s Chief Executive Officer, Eng Hani Sonbol to mark International Women’s Day 2022. The event featured multiple initiatives to strengthen women entrepreneurs’ ability to overcome barriers and to affect change in the sector’s offerings for women.
Opportunities for women emerging from the African Continental Free Trade Area were highlighted by Dr. Amany Asfour, President of the African Business Council. ITC Executive Director Pamela Coke-Hamilton was also joined by H.E. Dr. Hala El Said, Minister of Planning and Economic Development of Egypt, and H.E. Mr. Falou Samb, Special Advisor to the President of Senegal for Trade and Investment, among other distinguished speakers.
The joint message is that three pillars are instrumental: private sector strengthening, including women and youth; policy advocacy; and development of products that can compete globally.
In a memorable moment reflecting the spirit of the Small Business Week at Expo 2020 Dubai, ITC and partner United World brought HRH Princess Reem Bint Abdullah Bin Mosaad and players of the football team Al Hilal United together on the UN Hub stage to celebrate the contribution sport can make to the building of transferable skills and to sustainable development.