PROJECT TITLE: Strengthening Business AssociationsPROJECT DURATION: July 2016-June 2017(Phase III)PROJECT TEAM: Mr. Lor SOK, Project Advisor; Ms. Sophorn YANN, Project Manager; Mr. Sophoan TEP, Policy Analyst; Mr. Borann Yoeurm, Finance Director
Over the past decade, major economic reforms have helped to transform Cambodia into a trade-oriented economy with thriving industrial and services sectors. Our combination of competitive wages, good labour conditions, and friendly environment approach have fostered Cambodian businesses and attracted international investment. Opportunities for further prosperity lie in vast of land and young population, and location in the heart of one the fastest growing region in the world.
However, to translate opportunity into businesses, products and jobs, the CAMFEBA’s polices must support private sector development and encourage economic expansion. Through extensive research and intense conversations with CAMFEBA’s members, CAMFEBA has identified FOUR key policy areas. In this regards, in order to implement these policy, the project will play very important role to tackle. in addition, representative business associations exist in order to deliver value to business through services that enterprises cannot provide on their own. Their strength lies in their representative nature and in their functioning as networks. When they are effective, they create an enabling environment of policies, relationships and behaviors that foster economic growth and allow enterprises to thrive.
A. POLICY ADVOCACY
The taskforce will create a joint platform to represent the voices of different stakeholders hoping to promote reforms in Cambodia. This taskforce will be formed following a workshop around CAMFEBA’s recently released Business Vision 2020 report “Policy Priorities to Create an Enabling Environment for Sustainable Enterprise Development in Cambodia.”
1. Creating a conducive legal and regulatory environment to enable enterprise growth and development
2. Improving governance structures in Cambodia
3. Matching skills with the needs of the changing economy
CAMFEBA will document the findings and suggestions from the roundtables and feed this into the policy paper. By gathering a variety of ideas and perspectives, CAMFEBA will ensure the policy paper is not only relevant to the private sector, but also to the general public. The roundtables will provide the foundation for issue-based coalitions for reform.
POLICY PAPER AND RECOMMENDATIONS
For the selected policy issue, CAMFEBA will commission a consultant to generate a policy paper with concrete recommendations.
OUTREACH AND ADVOCACY
The taskforce will engage in a number of outreach activities to raise public awareness following the completion of the policy paper. CAMFEBA will print some copies of the final policy paper for distribution and these copies will be shared with relevant public officials, members of the parliament (the National Assembly and the Senate), leading business associations, civil society organizations, and other influencers. CAMFEBA will conduct a high-profile press conference to publicize the report and raise awareness of the key recommendations. CAMFEBA will also use popular social media channels to circulate the issue and raise public awareness of its work.
Based on the results of the public outreach and advocacy of this project, the subsequent project will continue the advocacy efforts and use the upcoming election for the national assembly to push the reform agenda forward.
B. CAPACITY BUILDING FOR BUSINESS ASSOCIATIONS
CAMFEBA finds that the workshop in Jan 2016 was remarkable. It is relatively important compared to other workshops that the project has delivered over the two years. The recent feedbacks from the business associations from the workshop in Jan 2016 pointed out that this was the first time workshop that BAs sat down and talked about issues that BAs have faced. They appreciated for having this workshop and express to have more of it.
TRAINING WORKSHOPS FOR BUSINESS ASSOCIATIONS
CIPE will deliver two two-day business association training workshops, for which CAMFEBA will serve as the host organization. The first workshop will take place during the first quarter and the second workshop approximately four months later. Building on previous CIPE-supported training on the advocacy process and public policy analysis, CIPE in this project will focus on the topics suggested by participants, who are eager to learn more about:
TAILORED COACHING AND MENTORING TO BUSINESS ASSOCIATIONS
Business associations must submit a one-page application detailing their needs, desired goal and outcome, and a brief description of how the technical assistance would be useful in their daily work. All independent and voluntary membership based business associations are eligible to request CIPE for assistance. CIPE staff will select the successful recipient based on the quality of application. CIPE will provide customized training sessions to at least two associations.
These tailored coaching and mentoring opportunities consist of basic information and foundational concepts delivered through structured training sessions, guided discussions, face to face consultative meetings, or regular skype calls to address their needs and challenges. The training will include an opportunity for personalized coaching for association leaders provided by CIPE trainers and experts.
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