ITA partners with NEPC to launch E-Lab Innova training for Nigerian agribusinesses

The Italian Trade Agency (ITA), an Italian governmental agency that oversees business partnerships and collaborations between Italian businesses and other world businesses, launched its first E-Lab Innova in Nigeria, as part of its commitment to boost trade relationships with the country.

The Agency teamed up with the Nigerian Export Promotion Commission (NEPC), together with other Italian partners like MACFRUT, to launch the initiative. E-Lab Innova is an educational training program that focuses on the agri-food sector of the Nigerian economy. It aims to increase the technical and managerial skills of Nigerian agri-food companies to make it less complicated to access EU markets and establish strong business partnerships with Italian companies.

“Nigeria remains a strategic point for engagement between the agency and other countries across West Africa,” said Alessandro Gerbino, ITA Director for Nigeria. “The E-Lab Innova holds prospects for Nigerian companies to be imparted on the knowledge and technicalities of their counterparts abroad whilst also paving the way for collaborations between Italian and Nigerian agribusinesses.”

Participants in the E-Lab Innova training were selected with the help of the NERC – all CEOs of high-potential companies that focus on the processing and production of foods such as shea nuts, groundnuts, mango, pineapple, etc. The program will last five weeks and will be implemented in three phases: (1) a preliminary assessment of the requirements of the technical and management training, company potential and profile; (2) a 2-week webinar focused on key internalization topics; (3) a 5-day study tour in Italy, including a Macfrut exhibition.

Deputy Director, International Export Offices, Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC), Uduak Etokowoh in a keynote address said the Nigerian economy needs such collaborations to strengthen trade relations with the rest of the world.

“The European Union (EU) is one of the largest markets for agribusiness, however, challenges such as logistics and inability to meet market needs pose a threat to growth opportunities,” Etokowoh said. “In adjusting to the new normal of virtual engagements, we are extremely delighted to partner the ITS to deliver this virtual; training in support of wealth creation for the economy and to enhance seamless penetration to the EU markets for Nigerian agribusinesses.”

The first E-Lab Innova training session in Nigeria had 13 agribusinesses in attendance including Cobrend Trading, United Agro Cooperative Society Limited, and others. The program will involve 40 agribusinesses in total. Since its launch in Africa, the E-Lab Innova has had more than 140 companies across Angola, Ethiopia, Ghana, Mozambique and Uganda, featuring full training program, study hours and exhibitions in Italy.

About the Italian Trade Agency

Italian Trade Agency (ITA) is an Italian government-backed agency that supports and oversees business development of Italian companies abroad and promotes foreign investment in Italy. The ITA provides small and medium Italian businesses with assistance, information, consulting, promotion and training. The ITA operates in 70 countries under the Italian embassy present in these countries.

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