One of FAPA’s (Fund for African Private Sector Assistance) main goals is to level the playing field for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) in Africa.

In a bid to achieve this goal, the donors of FAPA have just approved four projects worth US $3.9 million, which sums the total number of FAPA approved projects to seven and the cumulative grant amount to US $6.4 million since the beginning of 2018.

“SMEs are the heartbeat of African economies. FAPA’s solid track record in SMEs promotion through technical assistance demonstrates that positive development outcomes can be delivered by supporting SMEs in Africa… The specificity of these approvals resides in their focus on sectors such as Textiles, Apparel and Accessories (TA & A) as well as clean cooking which are, for the first time, receiving funding from FAPA,” said Olivier Eweck, Director of the Syndication, Co-financing and Technical Solutions Department at the Bank, and Chair of the FAPA Technical Committee.

The Fashionomics Africa Digital Platform project was awarded a grant of US $923,570 from FAPA, which is to be used to achieve an improved ecosystem for job creation and employement in the TA & A sector, focusing on women and youth. This project aims to assist targeted groups to access markets and financing, receive mentorship and further develop their entrepreneurial skills.

The Clean Cooking Industry technical assistance project of US $995,360, prioritised under the New Deal on Energy for Africa will be implemented in the following pilot countries: Cameroon, Ghana, and Kenya. The project aims to promote the growth of clean cooking solutions industry across its value chain. The Entrepreneurship Lab project, also funded by FAPA of US $988,202 is part of the Jobs for Youth in Africa strategy as well as the Boost Africa program. This initiative aims to tackle issues relating to youth unemployment in Africa. Finally, the US$1 million FAPA grant for Botswana Economic Diversification project will support capacity building of selected business associations in Botswana. The project is also intended to assist business development service providers to improve delivery.