Encouraging Civic Participation
Pragma has extensive experience working on Competitiveness Initiatives. Pragma currently implements a highly successful Rural Enterprise Competitiveness Program (RECP) in Azerbaijan. The project has been reaching targets on or ahead of schedule and has been greatly praised by USAID for the quality of work and timeliness of performance. Pragma has maintained excellent business relations with both the Mission and its business clients in Azerbaijan.
The primary focus of the program is identification and development of market opportunities and improving competitiveness of agribusinesses throughout the market chain. Thus far, the program has facilitated improvements in the marketing, internal capacity, and product quality of local processors and producers, and has increased its sales and market visibility. Pragma established the Azerbaijan Agribusiness Center (ACC) to develop the agribusiness sector of Azerbaijan. ACC provides a wide range of expertise to its agribusiness clients in the following areas:
(a) production (machinery service supply, product development, improving links to processors, market linkages; and modernization of production techniques and inputs);
(b) marketing (research on domestic and export markets; market surveys, plans, and strategies; market identification);
(c) processing (linkages to supply, improvement of process efficiency and equipment, food safety and quality, HACCP, packaging);
(d) logistics (collection and distribution centers, wholesale markets; transport, and machinery custom service); and
(e) finance and credit (bankable deals; agribusiness development foundations, alliances, or partnerships for development; facilitation of leasing; trade and contract finance mechanisms, asset registration; and machinery and facility targeted credit and investment).
To stimulate awareness of Azeri products in Azerbaijan, AAC has designed and launched a “BUY AZERI” Marketing Campaign. The campaign focuses on promoting the local food industry, increasing consumer awareness, and influencing purchasing behavior. The AAC will continue to build on this campaign in working with producers.
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