NAIROBI, April 5 — Kenya on Friday launched a UN-backed hub to promote transition of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to join the green economy, officials said.
Betty Maina, principal secretary in the ministry of industry, trade and cooperation, told journalists in Nairobi that the International Trade Center (ITC), the joint agency of the UN and the World Trade Organization will partner with Strathmore University to host the Trade for Sustainable Development Hub (T4SD).
“The objective of the T4SD Hub is to provide the needed technical assistance to SMEs on increasingly important topics such as climate change adaptation, resource efficiency, circular economy, market access and voluntary sustainability standards and certification,” Maina told journalists in Nairobi.
She added that the hub will act as a one-stop shop for SMEs to build sustainable business strategies so that they can access international markets as well as green finance providers.
The Kenyan official said that beginning in 2019 and for the next 24 months, ITC will work with selected SMEs to help them pursue entrepreneurship that promotes low carbon emissions.
She observed that the green economy provides numerous market opportunities for SMEs based on increasing consumer demand for traceable and sustainably produced products.
Maina noted that due to the lack of capacity and knowledge of SMEs to develop green business practices, they need to be supported in reducing their environmental and climate risks so that they participate in the transition to a green economy.