Multi-Lateral Summaries > United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO)

The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) is the specialized United Nations agency promoting sustainable, private sector-led industrial development in developing and transition economies with a special focus on least developed countries (LDCs) and sub-Saharan Africa. UNIDO helps countries to meet the challenge of sustainable industrial development through technical assistance and capacity building, so that they will be better equipped to compete in the global marketplace. UNIDO has sharpened its technical cooperation activities by focusing on three themes, which directly respond to international development priorities:

  • Poverty reduction through productive activities, by promoting industry, especially through small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in less developed areas, with a focus on employment creation, income generation and institutional capacity building.
  • Trade capacity building, by helping countries to develop production and trade-related capacities, including their capacity to meet the standards of international markets, and to develop the capacity to prove compliance with those market requirements.
  • Environment and energy, by promoting the green energy concept, in particular through fostering of resource efficiency, industrial energy efficiency and use of renewable sources of energy, particularly in rural areas, and supporting other activities for sustainable industrial development.

To improve standards of living through industries that are both internationally competitive and environmentally sustainable, the Organization has created a large portfolio of projects related to trade capacity building.

TCB Related Programme

UNIDO’s activities and programmes in Trade Capacity Building enhance the capacity of developing countries and countries with economies in transition to participate in global trade and hence increase their economic growth.

To effectively address the many factors underlying successful industrial exports and trade, UNIDO has adopted a holistic approach to trade capacity building structured around three key imperatives, the need to:

  • “Compete”: Developing competitive productive supply capacities;
  • “Conform”: Developing standards and conformity assessment infrastructure and services to prove compliance with market requirements in an internationally recognized manner;
  • “Connect”: Enhancing connectivity to markets.

On the supply side, UNIDO supports enterprises in their efforts to offer competitive, safe, reliable, cost-effective and compliant products on the world markets, by improving manufacturing competitiveness and resource-use efficiency, by upgrading existing enterprises, promoting technology management and diffusion, road-mapping and foresight, and by supporting the creation of clusters and export consortia. UNIDO provides such technical support services by building local capacity and through regional and national productivity centres, and sector-specific technology advisory centres. The activities are mainly targeted at strengthening institutional capacity through expert knowledge and best practices, training programmes, study tours, equipment supply, development of tools and methodologies, and undertaking pilot demonstration projects for replication. UNIDO also designs and implements national and regional commodity-based trade capacity building programmes, in cooperation with international partner agencies such as the World Trade Organization (WTO), International Trade Centre (ITC) and Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO).

With respect to conformity issues, UNIDO assists developing countries, and also those that have recently acceded to WTO, or are in the accession process, to develop their conformity infrastructure that will allow the implementation of WT§O rules and agreements such as on technical barriers to trade (TBT) and on sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) measures. Since globally-recognized conformity assessment infrastructure and services are a pre-condition for effective trade participation, UNIDO develops capacities of standards bodies, metrology/calibration and testing laboratories, inspection bodies, enterprise system management certification bodies, accreditation services and traceability schemes.

UNIDO also supports the strengthening of business advisory services to better enable companies to comply with standards such as Food Safety, Corporate social Responsibility (CSR), Environmental Impact, etc. In terms of market connectivity, UNIDO supports enterprises and exporters to enter global supply chains, develop business and trade partnerships. Where needed, UNIDO secures other services from partner agencies.

In addition to developing national capacities, UNIDO has also been increasingly developing regional trade-related compliance infrastructure and services. UNIDO is building-up regional trade capacity infrastructure in the Andean community, Central America, East African Community, West African Economic and Monetary Union (UEMOA) and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), as well as in the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) and Mekong regions, with a main emphasis on harmonization of standards and technical regulations, and conformity assessment schemes and procedures within a regional quality infrastructure. UNIDO also supports the development of International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC)/International Accreditation Forum (IAF) Multilateral Recognition Agreements (MRAs).

Partnerships

Over the last years, UNIDO has continuously been developing partnerships with international agencies in the area of trade capacity building, such as the WTO, World Bank, FAO, ITC and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), in order to strengthen the synergies and enhance collective impact. Such inter-agency cooperation in the framework of a common, systemic approach is what more recently has been advocated by the call for One UN Coherence in technical assistance delivery, and is also the underlying philosophy of the Aid for Trade Initiative.

Since UNIDO signed a MoU with the WTO in 2003, both organizations have joined forces to helping developing countries and transition economies to remove supply-side obstacles to trade, ensure conformity of their products to market requirements, and become better integrated into the multilateral trading system.

UNIDO undertakes joint global forum or advocacy activities with other international technical agencies, specifically in the area of standards and conformity, such as the International Bureau of Weights and Measures (BIPM), the International Accreditation Forum (IAF), the International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC), the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), and the International Organization of Legal Metrology (OIML).

In cooperation with the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) and ITU, UNIDO has organized regional workshops with the objective of engaging developing countries in standards and conformity assessment activities and help them better understand conformity assessment for the electrotechnical and telecommunications sectors, so that they can bridge specific gaps in their infrastructure.

UNIDO also participates in the Network on Metrology, Accreditation and Standardization for Developing Countries (DCMAS). Presently, the members of the DCMAS are BIPM, IAF, IEC, ILAC, ISO, ITC, ITU, OIML, United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) and UNIDO.

The Global Compact: UNIDO is one of six core agencies, and is especially mandated to assist SMEs in their efforts to adhere to the principles of the Global Compact, in particular in the area of Corporate Social responsibility (CSR).

UNIDO initiated a strategic partnership with the Global Social Compliance Programme (GSCP), which was created by and for global buying companies. The main objective of GSCP is to deliver a shared, global and sustainable approach towards improving the social and environmental sustainability of the shared supply base of global buying companies. As this requires guidelines, tools and training to implement compliant management practices at suppliers’ sites, GSCP partners with UNIDO to align Responsible Entrepreneurs Achievement Programme (REAP) with the GSCP Reference Tools (“REAP+”).

Within the Global Consumer Goods Forum (CGF), UNIDO collaborates with the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) in developing Global Markets Capacity Building Programme, a comprehensive step-by-step programme that guides businesses through a continuous improvement process in their food safety management systems, thus facilitating local market access and creating mutual acceptance along the supply chain systems. UNIDO and GFSI have established a Harmonized Protocol for Food Safety management and piloted its implementation in a number of countries in cooperation with major retailers.

UNIDO has launched a strategic partnership with the Directorate General for Health and Consumer Protection of the European Commission (DG SANCO) on developing the Food Safety Alert - Rapid Response Facility (FSA-RRF) to allow for a rapid delivery of intervention activities aimed at both short-term market access and longer term strategic orientation of the agro-food sector leading to export led growth and development.

Since UNIDO and UNDP signed a cooperation framework for joint programming at country level in 2004, UNIDO desks have been established in 11 countries that will benefit from the joint activities.

Since the mid-1990s, UNIDO and UNEP have run a joint programme that established a network of more than 30 National Cleaner Production Centres to, inter alia, help industries clean up their production processes and adopt cleaner technologies.

In 2005, UNIDO and UNODC signed a MoU that envisages joint programming in up to five countries, focusing on UNIDO’s SME and private sector development activities and UNODC’s sustainable livelihood programme.

Starting in 2007, UNIDO initiated TCB activities under the Africa Productive Capacity Initiative (APCI) of NEPAD.

Similar partnerships (e.g. joint programme development and implementation) exist with other UN agencies such as FAO, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

TCB activities in this guide

GLOBAL ADVOCACY

  • Cost-benefit analysis for conformity assessment infrastructure and services
  • Quality infrastructure needs assessment
  • Trade Standards Compliance Analysis
  • Industrial Development Reports

TRADE POLICY DEVELOPMENT

  • Development of national quality policy and strategy
  • Sectoral trade development studies
  • Industrial Policy studies
  • Industrial Statistics

LEGAL AND REGULATORY FRAMEWORK

  • Strengthening the legal and regulatory framework for conformity

SUPPLY CAPACITY

  • Advisory services on enterprise management systems
  • Advisory services on traceability
  • Techno-economic assessments
  • Product and process design and development
  • Development of sectoral technology centres
  • Food hygiene management
  • AGRO processing
  • Innovative technologies - Montreal Protocol
  • Cleaner energy for industry - Phase-Out Programmes in Latin America and the Caribbean
  • Renewable energy for industry
  • Renewable energy standards
  • Industrial energy efficiency
  • Energy management systems standards
  • Greening existing industries
  • Creation of new green industries
  • Export consortia
  • Cluster development
  • Subcontracting and Partnership Exchange (SPX) Programme
  • Investment Promotion: Targeting and attracting quality FDI for development impact
  • Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)
  • Business Partnership Programme
  • Industrial Modernization and Upgrading

COMPLIANCE SUPPORT INFRASTRUCTURE AND SERVICES

  • Standardization bodies
  • Metrology (measurement) laboratories
  • Testing laboratories
  • Accreditation bodies
  • Development of competent authorities for fish and horticulture exports
  • Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI): Global Markets Capacity Building Programme
  • Labnetwork
  • Quality infrastructure role in adopting energy efficiency measures

MARKET AND TRADE INFORMATION

  • Information and Business Development Services
  • Global Competitive Industrial Production Index
  • Statistics

SOUTH-SOUTH AND TRIANGULAR COOPERATION

  • South-South Cooperation mechanisms
  • Capacity building assistance to develop an Enterprise Development and Investment Promotion (EDIP) Programme for China
  • Business and Investment Roundtable for Promoting South-South Investment and Partnership between China and Latin American Countries
  • UNIDO-China food quality, safety and testing training facility in Dali
  • UNIDO-VIMTA South-South Training Facility for Testing Laboratories
  • Development of Safety and Quality Infrastructure for the Seafood Sector in Timor-Leste
  • Networks, platforms and partnerships with South-South cooperation focus
  • The fifth annual Global South-South Development Expo (GSSD) 2012

Examples of successful Projects:

AEON-UNIDO Project

Contact:

Ali Badarneh
Industrial Development Officer
Trade Capacity Branch

Tel.: +43-1 26026 3871

E-mail: A.Badarneh@unido.org

The joint program from UNIDO and AEON in Malaysia aims to increase safe and sustainable sourcing, and business linkages between AEON and its suppliers in Malaysia. The programme builds on AEON’s Good Citizenship Business Principles, incorporating food safety, integrity, sustainable development and community development which will be promoted throughout the supply chain, and on UNIDO’s experience in business partnership programmes to develop small and medium-sized enterprises, and in building trade capacity by increasing food safety, productivity and sustainability.

The project is part of UNIDO’s Sustainable Supplier Development Programme and builds on the successful cooperation with some of the other world’s top retailers to improve livelihoods and make sustainable supplies available through inclusive value chains. The partnership with AEON, a retail network comprising a large number of subsidiaries and affiliated companies ranging from convenience stores and supermarkets to shopping malls and specialty stores, is supported by the Japanese government.

The focus of the programme will be on food safety requirements, and participants undergo a series of training and mentoring sessions to implement effective food safety systems in line with a programme developed by the Global Food Safety Initiative’s Global Market Protocol.

The programme will benefit Malaysian small and medium-sized enterprises and farms, and local communities where suppliers operate, as well as consumers. It will not only give local suppliers access to new markets, but will also bring about important improvements in the areas of quality and food safety at the local level and will help suppliers to increase productivity and implement best international practices of corporate social responsibility (CSR) and sustainability in their daily operations. There are plans to extend and develop the programme, with a view to helping Malaysia become a hub for sustainable supplier development in the region.

The programme will benefit Malaysian small and medium-sized enterprises and farms, and local communities where suppliers operate, as well as consumers. It will not only give local suppliers access to new markets, but will also bring about important improvements in the areas of quality and food safety at the local level and will help suppliers to increase productivity and implement best international practices of corporate social responsibility (CSR) and sustainability in their daily operations. There are plans to extend and develop the programme, with a view to helping Malaysia become a hub for sustainable supplier development in the region.

The programme is a public-private partnership, jointly supported by UNIDO and AEON, which will be implemented in Malaysia with the support of Malaysia’s Ministry of International Trade and Industry, SME Corp. Malaysia and other local institutions, such as the Department of Islamic Development (JAKIM), the Ministry of Health, the Halal Industry Development Corporation, the Standard and Industrial Research Institute of Malaysia and the Federation of Malaysia Manufacturers.

Partnerships

Over the last years, UNIDO has continuously been developing partnerships with international agencies in the area of trade capacity building, such as the WTO, World Bank, FAO, ITC and UNCTAD, in order to strengthen the synergies and enhance collective impact. Such inter-agency cooperation in the framework of a common, systemic, non-agency-partisan approach is what more recently has been advocated by the call for One UN Coherence in technical assistance delivery, and is also the underlying philosophy of the Aid for Trade Initiative.

InExpo – Food Safety Project Sri Lanka

Contact:

Ali Badarneh
Industrial Development Officer
Trade Capacity Branch

Tel.: +43-1 26026 3871

E-mail: A.Badarneh@unido.org

The overall objective of the project is to facilitate industrial development and export capabilities (and consequently spurring economic growth and employment opportunities) in Sri Lanka by reducing technical barriers to trade through the strengthening of standards and institutional structures and national capacities.

Specifically, the target is to ensure Good Hygienic Practices (GHP), promote Food Safety, to enhance certification capacity in the country and to ensure the sustainability of the training and certification center. This has been successfully achieved by the established certification and training centre/body INDEXPO (jointly by Ceylon National Chamber of Industries (CNCI) and National Chambers of Exporters (NCE)) in cooperation with Ministry of Industrial Development. In addition, a GHP scheme (fully operated by IndExpo) named “Crowns for Food Hygiene” has been developed based on International best practices to assist and encourage food businesses in Sri Lanka to follow good hygienic practices.

More information: www.indexpocertification.lk/
http://www.crowns.lk/

The promotion of GFP and Food Safety benefits not only the Private & Public Catering establishments, but also the local consumers, who benefit from the improved GHP standards. Moreover ,the sustainability of the training and certification centre ensures credible and affordable services for all sectors in the country.

The programme is a public-private partnership, jointly with the national chambers as well as the Ministry of Industrial Development of Sri Lanka. Furthermore, the Sri Lankan Tourism Development Authority signed a MOU with IndExpo to implement the Crowns GHP scheme throughout the country.

Cinnamon Sector Project Sri Lanka

The project supports the cinnamon industry stakeholders in Sri Lanka to enhance the competitiveness of their value chain with the counterpart The Spice Council (TSC), thus enabling them to move up the value chain and compete more effectively in global trade. The direct impact of the project is to provide support to the industry to enhance quality and food safety compliance (SPS) and to meet with the conformity requirements of European and North American and high-end markets.

The programme is conducted in partnership with the Spice Council of Sri Lanka, representing all key stakeholders in the cinnamon industry as well as the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

CEB Cluster Project Lao PDR

The main objective of this project is to develop an overall competitive tourism industry, while at the same time strengthening the organic agriculture and the handicraft (especially the silk) industries in order to achieve a spill-over effect on those sectors through backward-linkages, and improving the export volume and quality of the above mentioned sectors, thereby positively impacting on poverty in targeted provinces of Lao PDR.

The project aims to develop, inter-alia, a competitive tourist industry by ensuring compliance with Food Safety, Service Quality and Environmental Standards through the introduction of a voluntary National Quality Certification Mark (NQCM)as well as improved management practices, workplace cooperation, as well as skills and productivity of workers in the tourism sector.

The UN system-wide coherence process, as conceived and guided by the General Assembly and ECOSOC’s resolutions, calls for strengthening the UN inter-agency coordination on the one hand, and increasing the development impact and national ownership of UN assistance at the country level, on the other hand. By joining their efforts in the UN CEB Inter-Agency Cluster on Trade and Productive Capacity, the agencies aim at addressing both: enhancing inter-agency coherence and joint initiatives at the country level with a view to maximizing the effectiveness of UN expertise and avoiding duplication of its efforts as well as facilitating dialogue with the national counterpart and, above all, enhancing national capacities. A greater effectiveness is also achieved: the donor finances one single joint programme, instead of several individual projects with each agency.

The Cluster is now recognized as a very dynamic inter-agency mechanism dedicated to the coordination of trade development operations at the national and regional levels within the UN system.

Better Work and Standards Programme (BEST) for Quality, Fisheries and Textile Sections of Bangladesh

The five-year programme (2010 – 2014) consists of three components - Component 1: Better Quality Infrastructure (BQI), Component 2: Better Fisheries Quality (BFQ) and Component 3: Better Work in Textiles and Garments (BWTG).

This five-year (2010-2014) project is funded by the European Union (EU) and the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (Norad) and implemented by UNIDO and German Technical Cooperation (GIZ) with € 16.9 million.

Component 1: Better Quality Infrastructure (BQI)

The main focus of this component are:

i) Development of an accreditation programme in cooperation with a foreign accreditation body for a number of product testing laboratories, certification and inspection bodies, and medical laboratories. This includes assistance to Bangladesh Accreditation Board (BAB) to enable full participation in international forums.

ii) Assistance to undertake structural, financial and legislative reforms. This includes further strengthening of the Bangladesh Standard and Testing Institution (BSTI) and of the National Metrology Institute, and the Bangladesh Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (BCSIR).

Component 2: Better Fisheries Quality (BFQ)

The main focus is on harmonizing the regulatory framework for controls in the supply chain (including veterinary medicines). This includes strengthening the control reach of the competent authorities throughout the supply chain.

Component 3: Better Work in Textiles and Garments (BWTG)

The main objective is the development of a national performance cluster for textiles and garments with NITTRAD (National Institute for Textile Technology Research and Design), BIFT (Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association Institute of Fashion and Technology) and iART (Institute of Apparel Research and Technology) and Bangladesh Institutes of Textile & Technology (BITT).

In parallel, in collaboration with UNIDO, GTZ will focus on raising awareness of international labour and social standards among workers, middle managers and civil society, including strengthening the capacity of supervisors, inspectors and managers to implement international labour and social standards through specialist training, developing mechanisms for mediation and arbitration among national as well as among international/national stakeholders, and strengthening the institutional capacity to support international labour and social standards through better policy and regulation.