Improved Skills, Better Products
It is every ambitious entrepreneur’s dream to bring their products to an international market. It means a greater source of revenue, a chance to expand business operations, and an opportunity to become a recognised and respected brand.
To ensure that independent footwear producers in Uzbekistan’s Namangan region have the ability to produce international-standard shoes, UNDP organised an excursion to Turkey for a number of leather-working entrepreneurs. The participants learnt best practices in producing and selling footwear, and also gained a better sense of what international clientele look for in high-quality shoes.
- The leatherworkers who participated in the study tour to Turkey have since began using their new skills at home, and are producing products for international markets.
Entrepreneur Adham Abbasitdinov, who visited the Footwear Industrialists Association of Turkey and several footwear production factories with his fellow travellers, considered the excursion to be a valuable learning experience.
“The trip to Turkey was very useful for me”, Mr. Abbasitdinov said. “When I was watching the process of refining leather, as used by our Turkish colleagues, it became evident that we need to drastically improve our level production process. From the moment we returned home from the trip, we began to think of ways to improve our work”.
In addition to learning about improved approaches to manufacturing, the participating entrepreneurs also learnt about the tastes and preferences of Turkey’s buyers and the level of competition that they face in overseas markets. With hard work and adaptability, there is confidence that Uzbekistan’s small businesses will be able to compete.
“When creating a new shoe model, it is very important to take into the account the desires and preferences of consumers”, said entrepreneur Anvarjon Hodjimirzaev of the ‘Dambog Poyabzalsavdo’ initiative. “High-quality, stylish footwear speaks well of a person, and this is something that producers need to understand”.
The appreciated trip was supported by the UNDP ‘Support to Foreign Trade and Investment Promotion in Uzbekistan’ project, which works to strengthen the trade access and production rates of local community businesses, while enhancing their access to domestic and foreign markets.