The Union of the Comoros has officially joined the African Business Incubator Communities (BIC Africa) Regional Network through the Support Programme for Production, Industrialisation and Free Trade in Comoros (APILE project), as announced on the 8th of June 2023 at this year’s Business Fair BIK 2023 (Salon des Entreprises) held in Moroni, Comoros.
BIC Africa, funded by the European Union and implemented by EBN, is a regional network connecting and supporting selected business incubators (BIs) in stimulating entrepreneurship and consolidating new innovative start-ups in Eastern and Southern Africa, with a specific focus on youth and women. The project was designed to build a supportive network of incubators from across selected African countries and pilot the BIC Africa quality label for business incubators, to be tested in the 5 pilot countries and potentially expanded to other African countries.
By joining the regional network, the Comorian business incubators and entrepreneurs will be able to access a range of state-of-the-art services from BIC Africa and quality business support tailored to the country-specific context through EBN’s quality-certified members. The services include African and European boot camps, ecosystem mapping and support, an acceleration programme for women entrepreneurs, and soft-landing opportunities, with a combination of online and in-person participation.
We are thrilled to welcome Comoros as the 5th African country into the BIC Africa Regional Network in collaboration with the APILE project (featuring a partnership between the EU, UNIDO, ITC) and together we aim to add additional value to the Comorian ecosystem. We aim to provide opportunities to Comorian business incubators and entrepreneurs so that they benefit from the network and help them to create decent jobs and drive economic development. We’re looking forward to working with the APILE Project and the selected business incubators to support and strengthen the entrepreneurship and innovation ecosystem in the Comoros.Robert Sanders, BIC Africa Team Leader at EBN.
Support Programme for Production, Industrialisation and Free Trade in Comoros (APILE-Comores) is a project funded by the European Union. It is an outcome of the ratification of the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the European Union in January 2019 by the Comoros within the framework of the Eastern and Southern Africa (ESA) group.
We believe that the Comorian participation to BIC Africa will greatly benefit the Entrepreneurship Support Ecosystem and the incubators in Comoros, as it will provide them the opportunity to exchange and learn from similar realities. At the same time, BIC Africa will be the ideal stage to showcase Comorian best practices and lessons learnt that could benefit the rest of the Network’s members. Through the APILE project, UNIDO is working towards strengthening the national capacities in providing technical support to the country’s industrialization and learning from peers and countries facing similar challenges and opportunities is indeed the best way to grow.Ebe Muschialli, APILE – UNIDO Project Manager.
APILE aims to encourage and facilitate the production of consumer goods of sufficient quality at the national level to be marketed in Comoros, as well as in regional and international markets. Through its three major components, implemented by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and International Trade Centre (ITC) the project will strengthen the local production capacity of Comoros to increase the possibilities of exporting products with higher added value, which will contribute to the creation of decent jobs for women and men. The technical and strategic support, mandated to UNIDO, focuses on assisting the Union of the Comoros in strengthening the technical capacities and competitiveness of young entrepreneurs (women and men) and the private sector, particularly VSEs/SMEs.