The Jeuns

Boosting Online Presence for Zambian Businesses with a Digital Trade Hub

March 27, 2024 | by The Jeuns

Small businesses in Livingstone, Zambia’s top tourism destination, are set to benefit from the ITC ecomConnect Learning Programme. This initiative, a partnership between the International Trade Centre (ITC) and Absa Bank Zambia Plc, aims to leverage digital tools and training to enhance online business and boost trade growth.

Mayor Constance Muleabai of Livingstone expressed excitement about the programme, stating that it represents a significant step towards economic development and empowerment of local entrepreneurs. With a growing community of small and medium enterprises in the city, the initiative aims to support these businesses in navigating the digital landscape and excelling in ecommerce.

The newly established hub will provide small businesses with free access to a range of online and offline resources, including a dedicated e-learning platform tailored to Zambian needs, online support from experts, e-commerce focus groups, technical workshops, and webinars. The programme also offers access to ITC’s e-commerce tools and partnerships with local and international marketplaces, as well as logistics and payment providers.

Owen Malambo, Director of Digital and Technology at Absa Bank Zambia, emphasized the hub’s focus on driving business enablement, linkages to finance, and overall support for small and medium enterprises, including startups.

This initiative in Zambia aligns with ITC’s Digital Moonshot, a global effort to ensure that small businesses in developing countries can harness the opportunities offered by the digital economy. The goal is to establish self-sufficient hubs that can diversify income streams and empower local businesses to thrive.

Daniel Chileshe, ITC’s Digital Moonshot Lead in Zambia, announced plans to launch a call for applications for businesses to participate in a five-month e-commerce programme. Selected businesses will receive free training, along with in-person consultancy to support their completion of the programme and access to additional resources.

The collaboration between ITC and Absa Bank Zambia underscores a commitment to fostering economic growth and digital transformation in Zambia’s business landscape. With the ecomConnect Learning Programme, small businesses in Livingstone are poised to seize new opportunities in the digital marketplace.

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