Dakar, 7 February 2017
Senegal is hosting an EIF regional workshop from 7 to 10 February 2017 at the Hôtel des Almadies, Dakar, to operationalize the implementation of EIF Phase Two, which will enable the poorest countries of French-speaking and Portuguese‑speaking Africa plus Haiti to strengthen their institutional and productive capacities so that they can gain more from inclusive and sustainable trade through to the EIF.
The regional workshop is organized jointly by the EIF Executive Secretariat and the Ministry of Commerce, Informal Sector, Consumption, Promotion of Local Products and SMEs, in cooperation with the Commission of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).
This workshop brings together the EIF Focal Points, staff from the EIF National Implementation Units, EIF Donor Facilitators in the French‑speaking and Portuguese‑speaking EIF countries, and other partners, in an effort to draw up concrete proposals on how the EIF can help the least developed countries (LDCs) to develop trade in a rapidly evolving global context, and to tackle cross‑cutting themes, ensure best value for money, and ultimately to contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The workshop will focus on improvement of sustainability, mobilization of resources, and monitoring and assessment to enhance the efficiency of interventions and boost the overall impact.
The EIF remains the only programme exclusively dedicated to supporting the LDCs in using trade both as a vehicle for economic growth and as an effective gateway for administering Aid for Trade. It is a unique global partnership between the LDCs, EIF Donors and EIF Agencies aimed at mobilizing and coordinating Aid‑for‑Trade resources and building trade capacity in the LDCs. The EIF empowers the LDCs themselves to identify areas where trade can form an integral part of their national development strategies, and assists them in harnessing Aid for Trade and investments towards that goal. It also aims to alleviate poverty worldwide by working with various stakeholders to make the best use of trade for sustainable development.
Recognized as a unique framework for aid effectiveness and delivery, the EIF's mandate is in line with the Istanbul Programme of Action for the Least Developed Countries and the Addis Ababa Action Agenda on Financing for Development. Furthermore, the EIF is recognized in Sustainable Development Goal 8 as a notable mechanism for promoting inclusive economic growth in the world's most challenging environments and also contributes to nine others of the 17 SDGs.
H.E. Mr Abdoulaye Diouf Sarr, Minister of Trade, Informal Sector, Consumption and Promotion of Local Products and SMEs of Senegal, noted that "[f]or Senegal, it can be said that the EIF programme has been satisfactory on the whole. In addition to the activities conducted under the Tier 1 Project, our country is currently implementing the mango sector support project, which is already beginning to produce results for the beneficiaries, particularly as regards training in good practices, equipment, fruit fly management, and the construction of a processing and packing unit in the Ziguinchor region, which is the main production area. Similarly, appropriate steps are being taken to ensure ownership and sustainability in the implementation of EIF Phase 2."
The Executive Director of the Executive Secretariat for the EIF, Mr Ratnakar Adhikari, said the following: "We are here today to analyse the challenges we are facing and grasp opportunities arising for the LDCs and for the EIF as a global partnership. How the LDCs manage participation in global and regional value chains, environmental concerns, e‑commerce and services trade and how they tackle trade costs will be critical. Compounding these challenges, Aid‑for‑Trade (AfT) funds are increasingly under pressure from competing priorities and budgetary headwinds. I believe we can embark on more concrete actions and rigorous measures to leverage the EIF as a unique global partnership to support LDCs in harnessing trade and AfT resources for inclusive and sustainable development."
The Donor Facilitator in Senegal, Mr Bernard Smolikowski, stressed that "[t]he objective of this four‑day workshop will be to join together with all the partners (Focal Points, EIF‑NIU staff, Donor Facilitators and other partners) to come up with concrete proposals for the LDCs to strengthen inclusive and sustainable trade development in a rapidly evolving global context."
The outcome of this workshop will contribute to the successful implementation of EIF Phase 2 at the country level. It will also help in consolidating and communicating results; ensuring quality and value for money; and securing sustainability of the results achieved and of the institutional platform for coordination and resource-leveraging.
The EIF Phase 2 reforms are based on a new Programme Framework including a Change Management Plan, a new logframe and a Risk Mitigation Matrix complemented by the EIF Medium‑Term Strategic Plan (2016‑2018) to ensure programme impact, leveraging and sustainability.
Notes to editors:
The EIF is a global partnership aimed at building trade capacity in all 48 LDCs and threegraduated countries. The EIF programme, administratively housed within the WTO, is the only global Aid‑for‑Trade programme exclusively designed for the LDCs and is, therefore, uniquely placed to assist countries to develop sustainable trade strategies, which have a positive impact on people's lives through the promotion of private sector development and job and income opportunities.
For further information: email@example.com and www.enhancedif.org.
 Angola, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cabo Verde, Comoros, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Guinea, Equatorial Guinea, Guinea‑Bissau, Haiti, Madagascar, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Central African Republic, Senegal, Chad and Togo.