The Swiss Import Promotion Programme (SIPPO) is a well-established mandate of the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), with the overall vision of sustainable and inclusive economic growth and integration of SIPPO partner countries into world trade, through its mission of supporting Business Support Organizations (so called BSOs - which includes public or private associations, chambers of commerce, export promotion agencies, among others) to increase their export promotion capacity and service provision to export-ready companies. As of 2017, SIPPO is implemented by Swisscontact, in partnership with BHP Brugger and Partners and Helvetas Swiss Intercooperation.
Through SIPPO's network of international and national experts, the programme aims at supporting BSOs to increase their export promotion capacity and service provision to export-ready companies. The programme is a powerful tool in promoting sustainable trade in 11 countries and 6 sectors: Fish & Seafood, Processed Foods, Natural Ingredients, Technical Wood, Value-added Textiles and Sustainable Tourism.
SIPPO supports BSOs through tailor-made capacity building in two areas:
1) Improving BSO Market entry activities through capacity building in market intelligence, trade fair participation, selling missions, buyer missions and study tours, and
2) Institutional Strengthening of Business Support Organizations (BSOs) through Strategic planning and positioning, Project Cycle Management and Knowledge sharing and learning.
BSOs are capacitated at their own speed and ownership is placed entirely in the hands of the service provider: BSOs who want to explore and improve access to new markets and opportunities for their export-ready companies to undertake these "last mile services" activities.
SIPPO thereby enhances BSO member companies' performances in export and thus contributes to increased income and more and better jobs.
SIPPO is active in the Processed Foods and Natural Ingredients sectors in South Africa, which are developed export sectors with suppliers who can deliver quality products and meet buyers' requirements. South Africa is an international player in canned fruit and vegetables, fruit juices and concentrates, dried fruit and nuts, as well as essential and vegetable oils/extracts and other natural ingredients.
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