Strengthening the competitiveness of Romanian SMEs

Article, 05.10.2018

Switzerland supports around 80 Romanian organic farms and wood furniture producers in marketing their products internationally. State Secretary Marie-Gabrielle Ineichen-Fleisch visited an agricultural enterprise that has benefited from Swiss training and advice to improve the marketing of its organic sea buckthorn products.

Four people visit a sea buckthorn plantation
State Secretary Marie-Gabrielle Ineichen-Fleisch visiting an agricultural enterprise that has improved the international marketing of its organic sea buckthorn products with Swiss support. © SECO

Many Romanian SMEs lack the necessary expertise to bring their local products to the international market effectively. Switzerland has therefore contributed CHF 2.5 million to enable Romanian organic farms and wood furniture producers to build up their expertise and develop marketing strategies.

Practical training courses for 80 SMEs

The Swiss export promotion programme has helped set up two regional 'export business centres' that provide some 80 SMEs with practical training and advice. The training courses cover topics such as international product requirements, management, diversification and risk mitigation. The SMEs also receive advice to develop their own export strategies and marketing plans. The programme has helped several organic farms in the Prahova Valley join forces to pool their resources and market their organic products together. 

International marketing of sea buckthorn products

One of the agricultural enterprises supported by the programme is Pereco SRL, which aims to market its organic sea buckthorn products internationally under its own Bioca brand. With Swiss support, this SME has expanded its production and supply capacities and opened two new shops, which form part of a national distribution network. SECO State Secretary Marie-Gabrielle Ineichen-Fleisch came away impressed with the motivation and spirit of entrepreneurship she encountered when she visited the project in the autumn of 2018.