The EU held CENTRAL ASIA INVEST networking meeting in Almaty
Thursday 22 September 2011
A two-day networking meeting CENTRAL ASIA INVEST took place in Almaty on 20-21 September in the framework of the eponymous EU programme. The Central Asia Invest gathers together projects partners, beneficiaries, the EU representatives and Government Officials from the different Central Asian countries.
Launched in 2007, Central Asia Invest (CAI) is a regional programme providing grants to projects promoting the development of the private sector, especially of small and medium-sized enterprises, in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. This year, the event offered a platform for all programme stakeholders to develop further their initiatives and share experience on private sector development in Central Asia, the press service of the EU Delegation to Kazakhstan reports.
Ambassador Norbert Jousten, the Head of the EU Delegation to Kazakhstan, commented in anticipation of the Central Asia Invest: “Small and medium-sized enterprises will always play a vital role in the sustainable development of the national economy and efforts have to be made so that SMEs can harness their full potential. Through the Central Asia Invest programme, the EU encourages and supports the growth and expansion of small and medium-sized business in the region through different initiatives, such as reinforcing competencies of business associations.”
Workshops were organized during the meeting. Project partners presented their case studies. The OECD presented communicated its Central-Asia initiative, including the part which is contributed through the Central Asia Invest EU programme. The Export Helpdesk – the online service to facilitate market access to the EU – was also presented to participants of the networking meeting.