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Stakeholders Dialogue on ‘Implementation of Sustainable Consumption and Production (SCP) measures in MSMEs’ in Fergana, Uzbekistan

On Friday, 5th November 2021, the European Union, SWITCH Asia program funded project ‘Resource Efficiency in Agri-food Production and Processing (REAP)’, a Stakeholder Dialogue on  “Implementation of Sustainable Consumption and Production (SCP) measures in MSMEs” at Asia Hotel in Fergana, Uzbekistan. The event brought togetherkey actors from Uzbekistan’s (mainly from Fergana region) agri-food production and processing micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) sector, namely; Industry associations, Industry cluster representatives,  relevant private institutions, and MSMEs themselves.

As a start for the event, Mr. Turan Makhamatdinov, Project Manager, CCIU presented and explained how the REAP project can help agri-food production and processing MSMEs in implementation of resource saving measures through Sustainable Consumption and Production (SCP) methodology, and also, how the project will work with wider stakeholder in strengthening the ecosystem for MSMEs to adapt SCP technologies. Mr. Hasan Pulatov, Technical Consultant, CCIU provided more information on ground support to MSMEs and showcased benefits of the project interventions through different resource saving case studies.

Mr. Amarnath Munnolimath, Project Manager, adelphi presented the detailed activities planned under the project for MSMEs and ecosystem actors, also emphasised on the major deliverables of the project and cleantech finance related activities under the project, especially on access to finance support for highly-motivated MSMEs in implementation of high-cost SCP measures.

Roundtable Discussions

As a major part of this stakeholder dialogue, a results-oriented roundtable discussions were held to understand the current challenges and opportunities in driving SCP implementations at MSME. Major challenges discussed were: around technical capabilities of currently available workforce to adapt to SCP implementations; no platforms or events to learn about SCP technologies; no best local case studies for using of food waste as resources; also related to access to finance to install new efficient technologies.

Each roundtable team was able to present the results, which will be taken in consideration during the project activities development and implementations. Industry (MSME) representatives were very happy to learn about the project and get involved with the project in near future to get benefited from the technical support.

Mr. Dilyorbek Abduqodirov, a representative from Department if Agriculture also showed interest to support in spreading the information to industries and industry associations in Fergana to join and get benefited from the REAP project. 

Stakeholder Recommendations

Following are some of the major recommendations from the group discussions:

·        Encourage programmes and projects that can support skill development for industry labours on identifying and implementing sustainable production methods & technologies;

·        Conduct knowledge sessions, workshops and seminars for MSMEs on SCP best practices;

·        Train and increase quality of technical consultants on SCP implementations;

·        To provide government loans with low interest rated for SMEs in food processing and producing sectors to adapt to new and efficient technologies.

·        Support conducting energy audits & provide industries with financial assistance to uptake energy efficiency initiatives;

·       Reducing import taxes for energy and resource efficient machinery.

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