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Cairo to host UN-ESCWA Meeting on Harnessing Technology for Enhanced Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises Productivity and Competitiveness


UN-ESCWA (The United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia), in partnership with the Arab Science and Technology Foundation (ASTF), holds an expert group meeting on “Harnessing Technology for Enhanced Small and Medium-sized Enterprises Productivity and Competitiveness” on 3 and 4 November 2007 at the JW Marriott Hotel in Mirage City in Cairo, Egypt. The expert group meeting will be held concurrently and complementarily with the ASTF “Made in the Arab World” Competition finals, scheduled to open at 9:00 AM on Saturday 3 November. The meeting, which starts at 10:00 AM on Saturday 3 November, will be attended by representatives from ministries responsible for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SME) policy-making and development from each UN-ESCWA member country. Participants will share their country experiences in terms of national policies and initiatives being undertaken to support technological development among SMEs. Discussions will target institutional, legal, financial, and policy frameworks promoting technology and innovation, as well as mechanisms for integrating technology into SME production processes and linking into value-added chains of production. Special emphasis will also be placed on standards as instruments for motivating innovation and adaptation of technology. The meeting will foster linkages and greater understanding about institutions and instruments for assisting SMEs to access, adopt and adapt new technologies. Recommendations of the meeting will guide decision-makers in governments, research and development centers and industry, in formulating and implementing national and regional policies, programmes and projects aimed at increasing SME competitiveness in the UN-ESCWA region.