News Tag: CUTIS
Ukrainian clothing manufacturers have every reason to succeed in Canada – fashion industry expert

The CUTIS project and the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce, under the CUTIS apparel trade mission, organized a visit to Ukraine by a representative of the Canadian fashion industry who is interested in finding reliable clothing manufacturers.

Sonali Nayak, Fashion Priests president, met with representatives of five Ukrainian companies participating in U CAN Export CUTIS support program for small and medium enterprises. They are:

Fashion Priests is a relatively new company with ambitious plans. It operates in several markets (including Canada, the USA, and India), and is constantly expanding purchasing geography.

Thanks to the Conference Board of Canada and TFO Canada, Sonali Nayak also visited Indonesia with a buyers’ trade mission. ‘Ukrainian companies are more ready to enter the Canadian market, the samples and models presented by Ukrainian manufacturers may be interesting for Canadian buyers,’ she said.

‘During the mission, I had the opportunity to meet with representatives of five Ukrainian companies (from the sports swimwear and leggings producer to the outwear factory) who made a positive impression on me.

Interesting models, modern equipment, high technology, good quality fabrics, creative teams are the components of Ukrainian clothing producers’ potential success in foreign markets,’ Sonali Nayak mentioned.

‘I definitely see the prospects for further cooperation. We have to harmonize, for example, size guides, because in Ukraine and Canada they are different, to choose the optimal styles and fabrics. I hope that the Fashion Priests specialists will visit the selected Ukrainian enterprises once again in the spring and will discuss all the details as well as made trial orders’, Fashion Priests president explained. 

Thanks to the Canada-Ukraine Free Trade Agreement, Ukrainian clothing is imported to Canada without paying import duties (18% on average). This is an additional plus for business partnership with Ukrainian manufacturers.

Maria Guzman, CUTIS Canadian expert and TFO Canada consultant, advises Ukrainian manufacturers to pay additional attention to details such as size matching, curves, seam size, etc. Ignoring such things can lead to Canadian buyers refusing to make an order, even if they generally like the style and clothing model, Maria Guzman concluded.

CUTIS held a training workshop on investment facilitation negotiations

CUTIS project conducted a two-day training workshop on investment facilitation negotiations in Kyiv on 26-27 November 2019.

The workshop was organized for trade and investment officials from the Ministry of Economic Development,Trade and Agriculture (MEDTA), Ukraine Investment Promotion Office (UkraineInvest) and other government agencies involving in investment review, approval and facilitation processes.

The key objective of the workshop is to support the Ukrainian government in preparing for investment facilitation negotiations under the WTO and other trade negotiating fora. Ukraine is actively negotiating free trade agreements with other countries (including Canada) which may include investment facilitation and other investment-related matters. As a result, it is important that Ukrainian trade negotiators and other stakeholders be prepared for investment facilitation negotiations.

Keynote speaker:

  • Wenguo Cai, Director, International Programs, CBoC
  • Oleksandra Brovko, Senior Trade and Investment Policy Expert, CUTIS

The workshop provided the background context on investment facilitation at the WTO and the background context on international investment agreements, including the historical developments and traditional treaty approaches to promoting foreign investment.

Elisabeth Tuerk, Chief, International Investment Agreements Section, UNCTAD presented the UNCTAD’s global action menu for investment facilitation.

Two CUTIS trade experts from Ottawa and Kyiv made presentations on some specific investment facilitation measures for potential inclusion in a multilateral investment facilitation agreement. A total of 10 investment facilitation measures were presented and discussed during the two-day workshop.

Finally, the workshop conducted a group activity and a plenary discussion, assessing Ukraine’s readiness for negotiating the investment facilitation agreement, and for implementing those investment facilitation measures.

How to export confectionery to Canada

The Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce and the Canada-Ukraine Trade and Investment Support Project (CUTIS) held a practical workshop on confectionery exports to Canada.

During the event, participants had the opportunity to learn more about the main trends in the Canadian confectionery market. Besides, guests had a chance to communicate with specially invited Canadian distributors and a Canadian industry expert.

Emma Turos, executive director of the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce in Ukraine, noted that there are no universal recipes for entering the Canadian market, so each company should find its way, taking into consideration its own advantages and analyzing the specifics of the Canadian market. Download the presentation here

‘Canada is a migrant-friendly country with a strong presence of Eastern Europe including Ukrainians. This creates excellent conditions for promoting Ukrainian products. However, the Canadian market is significantly different from the Ukrainian and EU markets. If a Ukrainian company is successful in Europe, it doesn’t mean that its products will automatically be in high demand in Canada,’ Bertrand Walle, TFO Canada Associate, said. The channels of product promotion differ considerably as well. For example, there is no such large concentration of hypermarkets in Canada as in Europe. Instead, Canadians prefer small niche stores (health and organic products, ethnic food). To learn more about producer opportunities for the Ukrainian confectionery companies to export products to Canada please follow the link.

Canadian distributor Michael Prudkov, Crussimpex (Canada), advised Ukrainian companies to cooperate and form large product batches. In this way, each of the companies will be able to minimize logistics costs and offer Canadian buyers a wider range of products.

Yuriy Baranov, Canadian Yummy Market distributor, stressed the importance of correctly labeling products. Canada is a bilingual country, so the label must contain the product information in two languages – English and French. In the low and mid-price segment, a brand is not so important for a Canadian consumer. Therefore, it makes sense for Ukrainian companies to enter the market with a private label.

Participants of the event could learn specific requirements for food packaging and labeling from the presentation of Oleksandra Brovko, CUTIS senior trade and investment policy expert, which can be downloaded via the link (in Ukrainian).

During the event, a sectoral guide for confectionery export to Canada was presented.

Maxim Boroda, CUTIS senior trade and investment analysis expert, explained main trends and consumer preferences in the Canadian confectionery market. Interestingly, three-quarters of the Canadian confectionery market (3.4 billion CAD) is chocolate products. The average Canadian consumer spent 123 CAD on confectionery and sweets in 2018.

You can find out more interesting information about the Canadian confectionery market by downloading the guide for free via the link (in Ukrainian)

Zoia Pavlenko, CUTIS environmental expert, drew the attention of the audience to the prospects for organic products in Canada. The Canadian organic market is the fifth largest in the world with sales of more than 3 billion euros. The Canadian consumer eagers to buy organic chocolate and candy at a reasonable price. COR certification is a prerequisite for organic exports to Canada. Ukrainian products can’t be sold in the Canadian market with European organic certificates.

It is also important for Ukrainian companies to be mindful of gender-neutral messaging in promoting products in the Canadian market. Booklets or advertising materials with the female body objectification definitely don’t help Ukrainian products find new connoisseurs in Canada. Examples of inappropriate advertising for the Canadian market can be downloaded via the link (in Ukrainian).

Interesting facts about free trade agreements with Canada

There are 14 free trade agreements currently in force in Canada involving 51 countries. According to Statistics Canada, at present Canada’s trade with these countries accounted for 78.5% of Canada’s IMPORTS and 89.7% of Canada’s EXPORTS in 2018.

The objective of free trade agreements is to increase trade with partner countries by reducing tariff barriers and opening access to foreign markets.

Three biggest free trade agreements:

North American Free Trade Agreement, NAFTA. Canada’s total trade with the member countries of NAFTA was valued at $788 billion and accounted for 66.8% of Canada’s total trade with the world in 2018.

Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement, CETA. Canada’s total trade with the member countries of CETA was valued at $118 billion and accounted for 10.0% of Canada’s total trade with the world in 2018.

Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership, CPTPP. Canada’s total trade with the member countries of CPTPP was valued at $98 billion and accounted for 8.3% of Canada’s total trade with the world in 2018.

On August 1, 2017, Canada-Ukraine Free Trade Agreement, CUFTA, entered into force. The Agreement will immediately open customs-free access to 98% of Canada’s market. This refers both to agricultural and industrial goods.

Canada’s situation is more complex. Right after the Agreement comes into force, the duties will be eliminated only for 72% of Canadian goods. The duties for the rest of 27% will be gradually reduced in compliance with transition periods – 3, 5, and 7 years. Besides, the Agreement provides for partial liberalization on the agricultural products key for Ukraine as well as some tariff rate quotas and specific goods.

Vinnytsia women entrepreneurs discussed the most promising sectors for Ukrainian exports to Canada

The CUTIS project in cooperation with regional chambers of commerce and industry launched a series of #SheChampion seminars. The main goal is to discuss barriers women entrepreneurs face in business and international trade, as well as share experience in entering foreign markets.

On October 17, in cooperation with the Vinnytsia Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the second SheChampion seminar was held in Vinnytsia, bringing together about 30 participants.

During the event, the participants learned about gender issues in international trade, and perspective sectors for Ukrainian small and medium enterprises in the Canadian market. Inna Konovchuk, a leading expert at the Vinnytsia Chamber of Commerce and Industry, provided key information about Canada which Ukrainian businesses need to be successful in the Canadian market.

Maksym Boroda, CUTIS senior trade and investment policy expert, paid attention to major trends in the Canadian footwear, clothing, furniture, and confectionery markets.

At the end of the event, the participants had the opportunity to take part in an interactive master class on employees’ motivation. Vira Porovska, CUTIS gender expert, explained how to retain key specialists using non-financial motivation.

In the process of the seminar, women entrepreneurs exchanged advice, accumulated new ideas for improving the export strategies of their enterprises, shared their experience and set up new business contacts.

Women entrepreneurs from Volyn region discussed the barriers on the way to international markets

The CUTIS project in cooperation with regional chambers of commerce and industry launched a series of #SheChampion seminars. The main goal is to discuss barriers women entrepreneurs face in business and international trade, as well as share experience in entering foreign markets.

On October 10, in cooperation with the Volyn Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the second SheChampion seminar was held in Lutsk, bringing together about 20 participants.

Women entrepreneurs discussed gender issues in international trade, learned more about online trading and shared success stories of finding new partners in foreign markets.

Successful craftswoman Kateryna Voylova has shared the secrets of opening an online store on Etsy e-commerce platform.

Olena Tarasenko from the Volyn enterprise “VGP” (TM “Ruta”, big paper products producer) described the history of export development to EU countries.

At the end of the event, the participants had the opportunity to take part in an interactive master class on employees’ motivation. Vira Porovska, CUTIS gender expert explained how to retain key specialists using non-financial motivation.

In the process of the seminar, women entrepreneurs exchanged advice, accumulated new ideas for improving the export strategies of their enterprises, shared their experience and set up new business contacts.

Similar events are planned in other regions of Ukraine. The next seminar will be in Vinnytsia, on October 17. Participation in the event is free in case of pre-registration

Canadian ICT business successfully develops cooperation with Ukrainian partners at Lviv ІТ Arena

This year, Canada was first represented with its national booth at the Lviv IT Arena, the biggest Ukrainian IT conference, which was held on September 27-29 in Lviv, Western Ukraine.

With the support of the Government of Canada, a range of events under the Canada National IT Program has been conducted. It’s a bright illustration of the great attention paid to developing cooperation between the Ukrainian and Canadian ICT sectors.

With the assistance of the Embassy of Canada, six leading Canadian ICT companies have visited Lviv IT Arena for the first time (Tektelic, Free Balance, GTA, IT Solution Invest, IT Action Group, and Web4you). 

On September 28, Trade Commission Service, Embassy of Canada to Ukraine in collaboration with the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce and the CUTIS project, organized the Canadian Business Breakfast which included B2B meetings between Canadian and Ukrainian companies. Roman Waschuk, Ambassador of Canada to Ukraine, opened the breakfast.

During the event, the Ukrainian N-iX company made the presentation of Ukrainian ICT sector achievements (Ukrainian IT Market in 2019 and beyond). 

About 20 Ukrainian companies attended b2b meetings with potential Canadian partners, including as leading companies like EPAM, SoftServe, as small and medium-sized businesses participating in CUTIS export support U CAN Export program (Inoxoft, Perfectial, LaSoft, Taurus Quadra).

On September 29, Canada Meet-Up meeting was held with the participation of the Honorary Consul of Canada Oksana Wynnyckyj-Yusypovych and the Canadian ICT business. About 40 Ukrainian ICT companies visited the event.

Summarizing, it is worth mentioning that the interest of Canadian ICT business in cooperation with Ukraine is ample proof of the high level of services that Ukrainian companies can and already provide to international partners in IT and communications sphere.

CUTIS project held a services export promotion workshop

Canada-Ukraine Trade and Investment Support (CUTIS) project, executed by the Conference Board of Canada (CBoC) and the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce (CUCC), in collaboration with Trade Facilitation Office of Canada (TFO Canada), and the Global Links Network (GLN) held a 2-day services export promotion workshop.

The main goal was to support the development of an enabling services export environment in Ukraine, as well as enhance the understanding and export readiness of Ukrainian services providers, particularly with the view to improving services export success to Canada.

The event was organized for Government officials from the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade (MEDT) and the Export Promotion Office (EPO), responsible for trade policy development and export promotion, trainers from various Chambers of Commerce in the regions, and selected representatives from service sector associations and companies.

Keynote speakers:

  • Wenguo Cai, Director, International Programs, The Conference Board of Canada
  • Michelle Hustler, Senior Associate, Global Links Network Inc
  • Oleksandra Brovko, Senior Trade and Investment Policy Expert, CUTIS

During the event, participants overviewed the issues related to trade in services, as well as best practices and guidance in the development of an enabling services-related trading environment that will allow service providers to thrive. The workshop concluded a range of roundtable discussions to allow the exchange of ideas, challenges and potential solutions to improve Ukraine’s services export competitiveness.

During the workshop, the following issues were discussed:

  • What has led to success in the IT sector in Ukraine?
  • How can this success be translated into other services sectors?
  • What reforms are required to strengthen the competitiveness of Ukraine’s services sectors?
  • How should government agencies and business associations promote trade in services?
  • What work has been done to measure Ukraine’s brand perception in major markets (such as in foreign ICT-related industries), and are strategies to be developed to enhance this?
  • What foreign partnerships does Ukraine have in place to encourage bilateral trade in services relationships?
  • How can Ukraine’s services dialogue be improved in the future?

As a result, participants got a better understanding of the needs, opportunities, and challenges related to exporting services to Canada. 

You can download the presentation following the link

The Canada-Ukraine Trade and Investment Support (CUTIS) Project is a 5-year (2016-2021) Canadian development assistance initiative designed to lower poverty in Ukraine through increasing exports from Ukraine to Canada and investment from Canada to Ukraine. The project funded by the Canadian Government through the Global Affairs Canada and implemented by the Conference Board of Canada in partnership with the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce.

The CUTIS project implements U CAN EXPORT Support Program in five priority sectors: clothing, footwear, furniture, confectionery, and IT services.

Ukrainian footwear companies participated in Canada’s largest shoe show for the third time

From August 18 to August 20, Ukrainian shoe companies participated in Canada’s largest Toronto Shoe Show.

This year more than 650 Canadian and European footwear and accessories brands were taking part in the exhibition.

As part of U CAN Export Support Program, the CUTIS project supported the participation of seven Ukrainian shoe manufacturers:

  • KaDar (Lutsk, men’s and women’s casual shoes)
  • Kredo (Khmelnitsky,  rubber footwear with EVA soles)
  • Olteya (Zhytomyr, women’s leather shoes)
  • Alisa-Line (Kharkiv, children’s rubber footwear)
  • Realpaks (Kharkiv, women’s and men’s rubber shoes)
  • Shoesprom Group (Kyiv, men’s and women’s shoes)
  • Stepter (Lviv region, men’s and women’s shoes)

This is the third shoe show in Canada for the Ukrainian footwear business. Previous trade shows took place on August 2018 and February 2019.

The results of the first two exhibitions are positive. Six Ukrainian producers have already delivered their samples to Canadian buyers, and three deals are almost on a finish line.

Before the exhibition, the CUTIS project organized a meeting of Ukrainian business with Cougar shoe company, which has been successfully operating in the Canadian shoe market since 1948!

Besides, as part of the retail tour, representatives of the Ukrainian shoe industry visited several malls and shoe stores in Toronto, including Nordstrom, ALDO, Hudson’s Bay, Steve Madden, Brawns. Such an introductory tour is very important because it helps Ukrainian businesses understand specific of Canada’s footwear industry and consumers’ preferences.

The Canada-Ukraine Free Trade Agreement (CUFTA) entered into force on August 1, 2017, and opened customs-free access to 98% of Canada’s market for Ukrainian companies. Canada’s situation is more complex. The duties were eliminated for 72% of Canadian goods. The customs tariffs for the rest of 27% will be gradually reduced in compliance with transition periods – 3, 5, and 7 years.

The Canada-Ukraine Trade and Investment Support (CUTIS) Project is a 5-year (2016-2021) Canadian development assistance initiative designed to lower poverty in Ukraine through increasing exports from Ukraine to Canada and investment from Canada to Ukraine. The project funded by the Canadian Government through the Global affairs Canada and implemented by the Conference Board of Canada in partnership with the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce.

The CUTIS project implements U CAN EXPORT Support Program in five priority sectors: clothing, footwear, furniture, confectionery, and IT services.

CUTIS represented Ukrainian apparel manufacturers at Canada’s leading clothing and textiles exhibition

From August 19 to 21, the products of nine Ukrainian apparel manufacturers were presented at the Apparel Textile Sourcing Canada, the biggest international sourcing event focused on the Canadian and North American Apparel, Textile, and Fashion sectors.

In Toronto, CUTIS experts and the Canadian TFO expert invited by the project will present Ukrainian companies’ samples that are part of the export support program U CAN Export:

Ukrainian apparel products were presented at ATSC for the second time. Last year, five Ukrainian brands participated in the ATSC fashion show.

Apparel Textile Sourcing Canada is the great option to meet thousands of apparel & fabric buyers, sourcing directors, designers, merchandisers, retail chains, department stores, and more from Canada, the USA, and the world.

In total, more than 500 manufacturers from more than 30 countries participated in the exhibition in Toronto.

After Toronto, the exhibition will take place in September in Europe and then in Miami, the USA.

ATSC features three days of sourcing, free seminars, and panels, fashion shows, networking, and inspiration.

The Canada-Ukraine Trade and Investment Support (CUTIS) project is a 5-year (2016-2021) Canadian development assistance initiative designed to increase exports from Ukraine to Canada and investment from Canada to Ukraine. The project funded by the Canadian Government through the Global Affairs Canada and implemented by the Conference Board of Canada in partnership with the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce.

Apparel is one of the priority areas for the project. CUTIS implements U CAN EXPORT Support Program in five priority sectors: clothing, footwear, furniture, confectionery, and IT services.