On March 19-20 the SCSI Programme brought together its partners in Bangkok to discuss approaches on private sector enhancement in regional economic integration processes. The emphasis was on strengthening small and medium enterprises (SMEs) inclusion from Cambodia, Laos, Mongolia and Vietnam in regional and global agricultural value chains.

Based on the export guideline train-of-trainer (ToT)and trainings for dragon fruit, longan, lychee, and watermelon, VIETRADE and GIZ set up two follow-up events on 28 February in Hanoi and 01 March 2019 in HCMC to award 14 trainer from trade promotion networks and associations and chambers.

To foster knowledge exchange on industrial parks, like eco-parks, cross-border economic zones and logistics parks in Northeast Asia, Jilin Province hosted a Policy Dialogue on Industrial Parks on September 5, 2018, in Changchun. Channeling the outcome of the dialogue, GIZ supported the Greater Tumen Initiative (GTI) Secretariat in compiling GTI’s first Policy Brief.

The agricultural sector offers an immense economic potential for development in Cambodia, Lao PDR, and Vietnam. However, due to informal trade channels and lack of capacity the revenue in agricultural trade with China remains low. On 05-06 December, SCSI invited main partners from the three countries for a regional workshop in Beijing to bundle its approaches within its three Southeast Asian focus countries and set a platform for regional knowledge exchange.

To enhance export capacity among Cambodian micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs), GIZ SCSI in cooperation with the General Directorate of Agriculture (GDA) organised a two folded training from 06-08 November 2018. A one day training workshop on the Step-by-Step Guidelines for Exporting Fresh Banana, Mango and Longan Fruits to China was held in Phnom Penh. The theoretical part then was followed by a technical training in Kratie province to learn about practical steps and utilise the guidelines at the production site.

To improve knowledge on free trade agreements (FTA) and regional trade agreements (RTA) among members of the Greater Tumen Initiative (GTI), the GTI Secretariat with the Ministry of Commerce of China (MofCom) and the China Association of International Trade (CAIT), organised the GTI Workshop on FTA/RTA Information Sharing on 25th October in Bo’ao. The workshop […]

o strengthen the coordination of cooperation efforts of Mongolia under the framework of the Greater Tumen Initiative (GTI), Mongolian GTI focal points convened for the first time to jointly discuss their approaches and engagement within the initiative.

Building up on the successful introduction of the GIZ-VIETRADE Export Guidelines for fresh fruits, both sides deepened cooperation on private sector development in regard of export processes to China. To enhance capacity of Vietnamese SMEs, GIZ and VIETRADE conducted a train-of-trainer (ToT) based on the Export Guidelines in Hanoi on 12-13 September 2018.

The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, the German Hanns-Seidel Foundation (HSS), and the Vocational Training Centre Pingdu, China, organised a pilot training course for the Laos Vocational Education Development Institute (VEDI) from 13-24 August 2018 on food processing and rural value chains to demonstrate the benefit of trilateral cooperation between Germany, China and third countries in the region.

To support the development of SMEs, governments, organisations and institutions around the world have set up SME Service Centers, to provide SMEs with respective business information and capacity-building. The GIZ SCSI Programme aims to improve SME inclusion in regional cooperation and integration processes in Asia. To accompany ongoing interventions, SCSI regularly compiles overviews on available online support sources for private sector development. The following list gathers information on SME Service Centers in the region as well as additional examples on good practices.

Jointly with the General Directorate of Agriculture (GDA) from the Ministry of Agriculture Forestry and Fishery (MAFF) Cambodia the GIZ SCSI Programme introduced the revised export guidelines for mango, banana and longan on 09 August 2018 in Phnom Penh. The workshop gathered participants from SMEs, business associations, and further involved ministerial departments like CAMCONTROL from the Ministry of Commerce.

Co-organised by the GTI Secretariat, the 7th Greater Tumen Initiative (GTI) Northeast Asia (NEA) Tourism Forum took place in Hunchun, China, on 03 August 2018. The Forum was held back-to-back with a training on Marketing of Tourism Destinations and Tourism Planning on 4 August, co-organised by the Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO).

On 22 June 2018, the Mongolian Ministry of Finance hosted the 18th Consultative Commission (CC) Meeting of the Greater Tumen Initiative in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. This year’s event was back-to-back with a High-level Forum on Priority Development Programs: Financial Cooperation Initiatives organised a day earlier by the Development Bank of Mongolia (DBM).

Delegates of five countries from local and provincial governments joined together on May 16 in Yingkou, PR China for preparing the upcoming 6th GTI Northeast Asia (NEA) Local Cooperation Committee (LCC) Meeting and the Working Meeting for the 4th LCC Logistics Sub-Committee (LSC) Meeting. The GIZ SCSI programme contributed to the event with a practical review session by introducing and working with the “starfish retrospective” tool.

Online courses are becoming a popular and efficient way of learning or updating knowledge and are often free of charge. To support capacity building of programme partners, policy makers and private sector actors – especially from Cambodia, Lao PDR, Mongolia and Viet Nam – SCSI introduces a series of online course providers on trade related topics. To learn more on areas like export procedures, standards, business process analysis (BPA), agricultural trade, trade facilitation policies, customs procedures or doing business in China, international, regional and national platforms are briefly introduced in this article.

To support programme partners, as well as policy makers and the private sector on topics of regional cooperation and integration, SCSI introduces relevant online tools on this website. Within the section “Databases” the programme gathers and updates relevant trade Information for respective stakeholders. SCSI set up three categories of existing online tools to inform relevant stakeholders on trade stats, trade facilitation and free trade agreement (FTA) data.

Jointly with the General Directorate of Agriculture (GDA) from the Ministry of Agriculture Forestry and Fishery (MAFF) Cambodia the GIZ SCSI Programme introduced export guidelines for mango, banana and longan on 27 March 2018 in Phnom Penh. The consultation workshop gathered participants from SMEs, business associations, and involved ministerial departments to give feedback on the content of the guidelines.

On 19 January 2018, the GIZ SCSI Programme together with the Vietnam Trade Promotion Agency VIETRADE introduced export guidelines for dragon fruit, longan, lychee and watermelon to the public in Hanoi. The kick off gathered participants from SMEs, business associations, academia, and involved ministerial departments. The guidelines support Vietnamese businesses to export agricultural goods to China by detailing the process step-by-step.

ASEAN is China’s second largest trade partner for agricultural and food products. However, the ASEAN China Free Trade Agreement (ACFTA) still stays underutilised especially for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). To foster an inclusive regional dialogue, to improve national capacities, and to enable the private sector to harness the opportunities of regional cooperation and trade the GIZ Programme Support for Economic Cooperation in Sub-Regional Initiatives in Asia (SCSI) commissioned a SPS status report on agricultural trade between the three countries and China. The report analyses the current SPS regime and challenges for regional trade in agricultural products.

For the first time, the Business School of National University of Mongolia (NUM) convened a conference on Mongolia’s Regional Integration and Trade Policy from 15 to 16 of December 2017. The conference took place in the Foreign Ministry of Mongolia. Various partners such as the Inner Mongolian University of Finance and Economics jointly implemented the academic event which brought together over 30 Mongolian and international researchers. Alongside other partners, such as the Northeast Asian Think Tank ERINA, GIZ supported the event.

On 6-7 December 2017 GIZ hosted the Regional Workshop on SPS Challenges and Opportunities-Exporting agriculture goods to China. The event was ogranised by the GIZ SCSI programme and brought together participants from respective government ministries and agencies of Cambodia, China, Lao PDR and Viet Nam.

Cross-border economic zones (CBEZ) located at border ports between two countries are a particular kind of special economic zone (SEZ). Especially in Asia, the recent years have shown a growth of these zones as a tool for development, often in less-developed border areas. CBEZ can facilitate trade and investment activities and are an important tool for the development of economic corridors such as the North-South Corridor connecting China and the ASEAN region. However, the bilateral management of such zones proves to be challenging.

On 16 November 2017, the annual International Seminar on Trade Facilitation in Northeast Asia took place in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. The seminar was jointly hosted by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP) and the Greater Tumen Initiative (GTI).

The International Regional Conference “Benefits of Geolocation: Central Asia as a Global Transit Hub” was held in Astana on November 14, 2017 with side-meetings on 13 and 15 November. The event was co-organised by the Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) Programmes “Trade Facilitation in Central Asia” and “Support for Economic Cooperation in Sub-regional Initiatives in Asia (SCSI)” with the Kazakhstan Institute for Strategic Studies (KAZISS).

On 22nd of September the Greater Tumen Initiative (GTI) Working Group on Authorised Economic Operator (AEO) systems concluded their third meeting. The AEO Working Group was set up under the framework of GTI Cooperation and drafts a Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA) between the four GTI member countries.

During the 2017 China-ASEAN EXPO (CAXEPO) in Nanning, Guangxi, SCSI participated in the China-ASEAN Port Cities Cooperation Network Working Conference organised by the Chinese Secretariat of China-ASEAN Port Cities Cooperation Network. SCSI supported the event inviting its partners from Haiphong Port Viet Nam as well as giving a presentation on “Port Cooperation for Regional Development: European Experiences”.

The SCSI programme co-organised the first GTI Trade and Investment Cooperation Roundtable Meeting on August 30th in Changchun, China. In close cooperation with the Chinese Ministry of Commerce (MofCom), the Jilin Provincial Government and the GTI Secretariat the event was planned with a clear focus to include all involved stakeholders. In effect, the local and central level of the government of the four GTI member countries, Mongolia, China, Korea and Russia, as well as businesses from regional and international organisations participated.

On 24 August 2017, the SCSI and VIETRADE organised a kick-off workshop in Ha Noi to obtain feedback on the drafted guidelines issued to support Export processes for Vietnamese SMEs to China. The consultant team from Viet Nam – comissioned with the task – presented on objectives, structiure, content, methodology, and further aproaches of the guidelines. Participants from SMEs and trade promotion centers as well as respective minitsries provided valuable feedback, which will be included in the preparation process.

The annual Meeting of the GTI Northeast Asia (NEA) Local Cooperation Committee (LCC) from 15-16 August 2017 brought together governors and vice-governors from Northeast Asia for the fifth time to propose review and discuss concrete cooperation projects in the region. At the meeting, Selenge Aimag of Mongolia joined the mechanism showing the growing interest of local and provincial governments to join a platform for the discussion of cross-border cooperation in Northeast Asia. The GIZ SCSI programme contributed to the discussion by providing examples of cross-border cooperation on the local level in Europe.

On 24 – 25 May 2017 the Federal Customs Service of the Russian Federation hosted the second Working Meeting of the AEO Working Group of the Greater Tumen Initiative (GTI) in Vladivostok. The meeting, being part of series of four meetings in total with the first being held in November 2016 in China, was co-organised by the GTI Secretariat to lay a further foundation for a GTI standardised AEO Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA) as well as GTI AEO Guidelines. The GIZ will further support the GTI Secretariat and the AEO Working Group within this process.

On 14th of May several delegates for landlocked developing countries (LLDC) countries in Asia, as well as GIZ programmes from the region and representatives of The United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP) met in Bangkok, Thailand to discuss the issues of opportunities and challenges arsing from the Chinese driven Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) for LLDCs.

Based on the longstanding cooperation on the topics of regional integration during the SCSI Programme’s predecessor phase (2011-2015) and in order to further align the programme’s work with the implementation partners in China and Mongolia, two cooperation agreements have been signed. According to the Memoranda, which will last until 2019, GIZ’s SCSI Programme will strengthen endeavours with its partners to support regional integration in Northeast Asia under the framework of the Greater Tumen Initiative (GTI).

From 24 February to 03 March 2017 the GIZ SCSI programme successfully conducted a fact-finding mission to Cambodia, Lao PDR, and Viet Nam (CLV). As part of the mission two workshops on “ACFTA – Recent developments in exporting Agricultural Goods to China” were held in Hanoi and Phnom Penh.

Activities to support utilisation of the ASEAN-China Free Trade Area (ACFTA) were initiated during the first phase (2011-2015) by the predecessor programme Regional Cooperation and Integration in Asia (RCI). Based on the efforts, SCSI is currently planning and enhancing it’s engagement with this regional FTA as part of the programme’s support to Cambodia, Lao PDR and Viet Nam (CLV). Please access the translated rice-related standards from previous activities here.

The annual International Seminar on Trade Facilitation in Northeast Asia organised by United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP) and the Greater Tumen Initiative (GTI) was held on 13 December 2016. The event serves as a platform for dialogue and cooperation on trade facilitation issues among relevant stakeholders in the Greater Tumen Region. Magnus Brod presented on GIZ experiences in regional cooperation addressing agricultural trade standards in the ASEAN region.

On 24-28 October 2016 Korean Customs Service (KCS) hosted the 5th Trade Facilitation Capacity Building Workshop of the Greater Tumen Initiative (GTI) in Seoul which was co-organized by the GTI Secretariat. The workshop has been held since 2012 to facilitate trade in Northeast Asia through knowledge sharing among national and local government officials, custom officials from GTI member countries as well as experts from international organisations, research institutes, and the private sector. GIZ supported the workshop with an input on “Facilitate safe agricultural trade Experiences from EU integration”.

From September 22-23, SCSI hosted a training in Beijing to enhance the communication capacity for the Secretariat of the Greater Tumen Initiative (GTI). Participants that attended the workshop included GTI Secretariat staff, as well as representatives of the Chinese Ministry of Commerce and the Russian Federation’s Trade Mission. Based on the positive feedback from a similar training last year – which brought together GTI Secretariat and national stakeholders – a training on proposal writing for Mongolian GTI Focal Points followed in Ulaanbaatar from September 26-27.

Together with the Programme on Cooperation for the Enhancement of SADC Regional Economic Integration (CESARE) and the German Development Insitute (DIE) Trade and Investment Team the SCSI programme organised a session during the 2016 ‘Global Retreat on Private Sector Development, Economic Policy and Cooperation with the Private Sector’ organised by GIZ which took place in Bad Neunahr, Germany from September 5 to 6. The event was headed ‘Develop, Perform, Achieve: Innovative Approaches to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)’ and provided an exchange platform for development professionals, private sector managers and political officials.

On 5-6 July 2016 Mongolia hosted the first Working Meeting of the recently established Agriculture Committee of the Greater Tumen Initiative (GTI) in Ulaanbaatar. The meeting was co-organized by the GTI Secretariat and the Ministry of Food and Agriculture of Mongolia. The objective was to lay the foundation for the GTI Regional Agricultural Strategic Action Plan (SAP) based on the member states’ national strategies as well as the findings and suggestions of the Regional Report on Agricultural Cooperation in the Greater Tumen Region commissioned by GTI.

In March 2016 the Government of the Republic of Korea (RoK) hosted the 16th Consultative Commission Meeting of the Greater Tumen Initiative (GTI) in Seoul, which was opened by the RoK’s Deputy Minister for International Economic Affairs, Ministry of Strategy and Finance.

From 23-25 November 2015, GIZ SCSI organised a capacity building workshop in Beijing for the Greater Tumen Initiative (GTI) Secretariat and staff. Following the invite of GTI, national coordinators and representatives from line ministries joined as well. The purpose of the workshop was to train GTI Secretariat and GTI focal points in writing Terms of Reference (ToR) and proposals following the GTI Strategic Action Plan and project guidelines in order to contribute to improved policy coordination and project implementation.

From 18-19th June 2016, the Think20 (T20) Conference on Innovation, New Economy and Structural Reform took place in the county of Anji, Zhejiang Province, PR China. The international conference, jointly hosted by China Academy of West Region Development (CAWD) and Zhejiang University welcomed participants and guests from over 25 countries, including about ten G20 member countries.

Fuelled by the growing gap in global infrastructure, recent developments in Asia have spurred an increase in regional infrastructure investments. National governments, international organisations and regional institutions have established their own agendas, sometimes lacking communication and dialogue. Thus, the SCSI Programme successfully held the Roundtable “Regional Infrastructure Investment Initiatives – Zero-Sum or Win-Win Collaboration” from 11-12 September 2015.

On August 07, 2015, the Greater Tumen Initiative (GTI) convened its 3rd Northeast Asia (NEA) Local Cooperation Committee (LCC) Meeting in Choibalsan, Dornod aimag, Mongolia. In the course ofthe gathering, two new members were admitted to the LCC, namely Busan Metropolitan City and Jeju Special Self-Governing Province of the Republic of Korea (ROK).

The Greater Tumen Initiative (GTI) convened its 5th Transport Board Meeting as well as a Seminar on the Promotion of Sea-Land Routes in the Greater Tumen Region (GTR) in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, on June 15, 2015.

On May 27-28, 2015, the third international export forum took place in Bangkok, Thailand, this time under the title “Asian Regional Integration Revisited: New Perspectives for Old Institutions?” It brought together 40 experts from the member countries of four sub-regional initiatives, namely the Pan-Beibu Gulf (PBG) Economic Cooperation, the Greater Tumen Initiative (GTI), the Greater Mekong Sub-Region (GMS) Economic Cooperation, and the South Asia Sub-Regional Economic Cooperation (SASEC), as well as from the ASEAN regional initiative.

In light of supporting the Greater Tumen Initiative’s (GTI) mechanism for the cooperation of border regions, the Local Cooperation Committee (LCC), GIZ has commissioned a presentation from German Expert Prof. Dr. Burkhard Lemper of the Institute of Shipping Logistics (ISL) in Bremen.

From 01 to 03 February 2015, the Greater Tumen Inititative (GTI) organised a Capacity Building Training Programme aimed at participants from the region working in tourism in Arxan City, Inner Mongolia, PR China.

Within the framework of Pan-Beibu Gulf (PBG) Economic Cooperation that encompasses the ASEAN Member states and PR China, maritime economy is one of the main focus areas for cooperation. In this regard GIZ is offering support for maritime chains and clusters.

In light of ongoing processes to establish a Trade Facilitation Single Window System in Mongolia, GIZ’s RCI Programme conducted a training on “Business Process Analysis (BPA) and Mongolia’s Single Window (SW) Implementation Process” from 01 to 03 October 2014 in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia.

From 30 June to 04 July 2014, the GIZ programme “Regional Economic Cooperation and Integration (RCI) in Asia” organised a study tour and workshop on “Building Capacities for Labour Migration Management in Cambodia and Lao PDR” in Manila, the Philippines.