Established in 1964, the International Trade Centre (ITC) is the joint agency of the World Trade Organization and the United Nations.
The International Trade Centre (ITC) is the only development agency that is fully dedicated to supporting the internationalization of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
This means that the agency enables SMEs in developing and transition economies to become more competitive and connect to international markets for trade and investment, thus raising incomes and creating job opportunities, especially for women, young people, and poor communities.
ICS and the ITC have been working closely since 2015, collaborating fruitfully on a multitude of different projects, aiming to bring support and tools for the ICS members’ supplying factories. The two have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in 2019, and the ITC has since become ICS’ main partner.
ICS/ITC Common Projects
Several publicly available trainings have been made on accessing and filling in the Factory Profile, creating the Factory ID and managing the network and privacy on Sustainability Map. When filling in your Factory Profile, use Google Chrome or Edge preferably and not Internet Explorer.
Both ICS social and environmental criteria have been been identified and assessed by the ITC on the Standards Map.
The Standards Map contains comprehensive, verified and transparent information on standards for environmental protection, worker and labor rights, economic development, quality and food safety, as well as business ethics.
In 2018, ICS partnered with International Trade Centre (ITC) to strengthen competitiveness and climate resilience in the Moroccan textile value chain.
The first stage of the project included a practical four-step approach that helps companies analyze climate change risks and opportunities and generate climate adaptation strategies, communicate them, and identify the appropriate
technologies, finance, and services needed to implement them.
During its second stage, the project focused on implementation and worked with SMEs in Morocco to develop climate-change adaptation strategies. The participants were exposed to a blended learning approach. It included online learning through the ‘Becoming a Climate Expert’ course, featuring contributions from the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and Sustainability Map, ITC’s online toolkit on voluntary sustainability standards (VSS).
Further, ITC and ICS partnered to strengthen competitiveness and improve resource efficiency and circular production processes in the Tunisian textile value chain. The objective is to increase SME competitiveness through improved resource efficiency (e.g. energy, water and waste) and enhanced productivity.
At the core of the project’s component approach lies a customized coaching programme which is based on the analyses of buyer requirements and performance of local SMEs in terms of resource efficient and circular production processes. In Tunisia, coaching sessions will be held between September and December 2019. There will be 3 on-site coaching sessions per factory, complemented with an e-learning course and several in-depth workshops on common pressing issues of the selected SMEs.
ICS’ partner, the International Trade Centre (ITC), organized workshops on Resource Efficiency and Circular Production (RECP) practices in Morocco and Viet Nam.
In Viet Nam, the module aimed to support Vietnamese companies in optimizing their use and management of resources (water, energy, and waste) and in identifying solutions to make their production process cleaner and more circular. In Morocco, the workshop provided the opportunity to have buyers, suppliers, and donors exchange on the advantages for companies to implement RECP practices, challenges to implement these practices, and sources and conditions of access to funding.
ICS and its members participated in the project by identifying possible supplying factories that could participate.