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Thematic Area:

SME Banking & Development

Duration:            

2019 – ongoing

Client:                

Asian Development Bank (ADB)

Region:             

Asia

Country Coverage:           

China

Project Overview

This four-year project provides technical assistance (TA) support in four selected project cities (i.e. Hegang, Jixi, Qitaihe, and Shuangyashan) in the north-eastern Chinese province of Heilongjiang to strengthen the capacity of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in non-coal related industries. Economic revitalisation in the province has been challenging due to a lack of (i) effective programmes for SME development, (ii) SME financing for investments and longer-term working capital, (iii) investments in competitive products and research and development, (iv) capacity to develop and expand businesses, (v) strategic workforce development, and (vi) attractive urban environments and services. More information about the project can be found here.

Since the project started, Frankfurt School has implemented the following activities for each of the four project cities:

(1) Provision of TA to the Business Development Services (BDS) office:

  • Supporting and assisting the BDS office of the local government to accomplish its tasks and activities for the development of the local SME ecosystem.

(2) Provision of TA to establish and strengthen the web-based SME platform:

  • Assisting the BDS office to build, maintain and oversee a regional web-based SME service platform;
  • Facilitating and strengthening SME associations ability to organise regular business-to-business activities and off-line events;
  • Integrating local resources in accordance with industry value chains and introducing new Chinese tech firms like Alibaba or Tencent and encouraging SMEs to cooperate with universities, research institutions; and,
  • Building a science and technology achievement transformation platform, research and development platform in project cities or through remote collaboration.

(3) Provision of BDS-focused TA to at least 25 SMEs per project city with services such as:

  • Strategic planning, business expansion, new business development, and new market entry;
  • Product development and design, including tech-related (access to new technology);
  • Management capability and access to the latest industry practices;
  • Sales and marketing capabilities to improve sales and/or market share, including branding;
  • Business operations improvement and optimisation; and,
  • Investment-related support, such as formulating business plans and investor pitches.

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