United Nations Economic Commission for Africa

Established by the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations (UN) in 1958 as one of the UN's five regional commissions, ECA's mandate is to promote the economic and social development of its member States, foster intra-regional integration, and promote international cooperation for Africa's development.

Made up of 54 member States, and playing a dual role as a regional arm of the UN and as a key component of the African institutional landscape, ECA is well positioned to make unique contributions to address the Continent’s development challenges.

In the framework of the SME Surge project, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa is focused on strengthening capacities of MSMEs in Southern Africa and Africa to address the impacts of Covid crisis and to build back better.  The strengthening of capacities are being delivered through:

(i) two studies providing case examples and  policy recommendations to MSMEs to enhance their competitiveness (e.g. digitalization) and new markets and new sectors to exploit in the context of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) and the Southern African Development Community (SADC). The studies are entitled: " Opportunities for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises within the Green and Blue Economy: The case of the Southern African Development Community” and “Role of Digitalization in Strengthening Capacities of Micro, Small and Medium-size Enterprises (MSMEs) in Southern Africa to Take Advantage of the AfCFTA". The latter is developed in partnership with ECA SROSA and ECA Digital Center of Excellence.

(ii) the creation of a portal on technology and innovation for MSMEs that will be hosted by the SADC Business Council 

(iii) delivery of an online training course on “Technology and Innovation for African businesses in addressing the impact of Covid-19”.

(iv) a report assessing the impact of Covid-19 on MSMEs in Southern Africa based on survey questionnaires currently being implemented in Namibia and Mozambique, as part of a series of reports assessing the impact of Covid-19 on  Southern African member states. 

Contact details:

To be provided

Partner URL: https://www.uneca.org