CEPGL (La Communauté Economique des Pays des Grands Lacs)

Project Description

Coordination of regional activities in support of women involved in cross-border informal trade in the Economic Community of the Great Lakes Countries

 

Republic of Rwanda

Republic of Burundi

Democratic Republic of the Congo

 

Amount: € 270,000.00

The CEPGL (La Communauté Economique des Pays des Grands Lacs) project was based within the Economic Community of the Great Lakes Countries and directly involved 146 women and 94 men, all informal traders. The aim was to empower women traders by addressing problems arising from existing migration and customs procedures. These problems, coupled with safety issues, were identified as a contributory cause of the poor socio-economic wellbeing of women engaged in cross-border informal trade within the Community. Also, the project aims to address challenges that women involved in cross-border informal commerce face such as lack of access to bank credit.  Hence sought to increase their economic capacity by encouraging the formation of cooperatives, thus increasing the possibility of lines of credit becoming available. A pilot project aimed at improving facilities for cross-border trade was a significant part of the overall project.

Key Results

The La Communauté Economique des Pays des Grands Lacs (CEPGL) addressed the vulnerability of women involved in the informal cross-border trade.  Two hundred (250) informal traders are organised into 2 federations and 10 associations and an on-line database of women active in informal cross-border trade was established.  A compendium of national and regional instruments governing migration and customs procedures in the Economic Community of the Great Lakes Countries area relating to cross-border trade was developed for sensitization and awareness raising. Also, a guide to good practice in respect of administrative, customs and migration has been developed and a series of workshops and regular meetings to discuss procedures were initiated.