The Green Recovery Forum: Leveraging the contributions of MSMEs to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals
The Green Recovery Forum: Leveraging the contributions of MSMEs to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals is a collaborative partnership between SEI, SEED, ANDE, and partners. The Forum highlights MSMEs potential and contribution to the Green Recovery, their need for support to build back economically while emphasising the MSMEs’ green and socially-inclusive approach in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. The Green Recovery Forum consists of two lead-up events which are the Green Recovery Enterprise Clinic and the Green Recovery Intermediary Lab and one public event namely the Green Recovery Multi-Stakeholder Forum which is a culmination point for the forum where findings from the Clinic and Lab will be presented to intermediaries and policymakers to effect change in MSMEs policies. This post will present the events that were implemented so far, the findings from them, and the Green Recovery Multi-Stakeholder Forum plan.
The Green Recovery Enterprise Clinic
The Green Recovery Enterprise Clinic took place on February 9th, 2022 to highlight the contributions that green and socially inclusive (hereinafter referred to as green and social) MSMEs have in a sustainable and equitable recovery and explore MSMEs challenges that hindered them from achieving the SDGs and having COVID-10 resilience. Through a virtual participatory workshop guided by an assessment, 15 green and social MSMEs came together to comprehensively assess topic areas relevant to their businesses.
The Green Recovery Enterprise Clinic Assessment tested 15 green and/or social MSMEs from Thailand, Indonesia, and India on seven critical Green Recovery readiness factors which are: 1) business readiness, 2) financial readiness, 3) organisational readiness, 4) ecosystem readiness, 5) social inclusivity readiness, 6) market readiness, 7) gender equality readiness. Results were collected on a country-level and then the accumulated median was calculated for a regional-level ranking of the seven critical Green Recovery readiness factors. The results showed that MSMEs were doing well in terms of their business readiness meaning that most businesses have an eco-efficient method in production and a wide variety of social and environmental products and/or services in existence. MSMEs also had great social impact readiness meaning that they were employing, serving, and had managerial positions for marginalised groups (i.e., low-income, minority, indigenous groups, people with disabilities, and small-scale farmers) in their value chain and businesses. The factors that MSMEs needed additional support in are financial, market, ecosystem, and gender equality. Meaning that enterprise sales went down and had less market access; enterprises needed more financial and ecosystem support; and also, enterprises needed to pay more attention to increasing women and non-normative gender and sexualities people in male-dominated sectors.
Green Recovery Intermediary Lab
Following the Green Recovery Enterprise Clinic, SEED implemented the Green Recovery Intermediary Lab on February 23rd, 2022 which brought green and social MSMEs intermediaries together to co-create practical policy recommendations built on the findings from the Green Recovery Enterprise Clinic. The Intermediary Lab had 30 participants from eight countries in South and Southeast Asia who were green and social incubators, academic business development supporters, researchers, development institutes, and business support organisations. In the Green Recovery Intermediary Lab, the intermediaries gathered to map out current MSMEs support options; map out what other MSEMs support options are needed; review policy recommendations; and offer new collaboration opportunities amongst intermediaries.
The Green Recovery Intermediary Lab resulted in MSMEs support policy recommendations which required additional support. The MSME support option needs are focused on raising regional awareness across South and Southeast Asia about synergies. In addition, financing for green and socially inclusive MSMEs should be relevant and responsive to real needs. Financing should come with business incubation, on topics such as financial literacy, so that the supply and demand correspond to each other’s needs and considerations. Government and financial institutions need to also have a better understanding in partnership with intermediaries about MSMEs funding and ticket size for different MSMEs size and stages. Lastly, impact assessment training for MSMEs, and understanding the MSMEs impact by financial institutions and government bodies will be crucial to provide financial support and create better MSMEs business development support.
Green Recovery Multi-Stakeholder Forum
Based on the gathered insights and recommendations from the Green Recovery Enterprise Clinic and Intermediary Lab, the Green Recovery Multi-Stakeholder Forum which will be hosted virtually on March 31st (2:00-5:00 pm GMT+7) engages a wider circle of ecosystem stakeholders which includes public agencies, development partners, international organisations, corporate foundations, and civil society organisation to highlight the role of MSMEs in the Green Recovery and scaling MSMEs support options. The forum will also be used to showcase the policy recommendations leveraging the insights harvested throughout the two lead-up events to support the overall uptake with key ecosystem actors.
The Green Recovery Forum serves as a culminating public event of 60-80 participants with an aim to facilitate dialogues about Green Recovery MSMEs policy decisions. The Multi-Stakeholder Forum provides a platform to create mutual recognition for sustainable goals in economic recovery, boosting back income, and growth on a fair and environmentally-friendly path. Mainstreaming the Green Recovery with the main stakeholder groups which are MSMEs, intermediaries, and policymakers will translate into more decent jobs, gender equality and social inclusiveness, and sustainable communities.
Register for the Green Recovery Multi-Stakeholder Forum here