News Tag: gender
CUTIS held an export forum for apparel and footwear manufacturers interested in trade with Canada

The CUTIS project and the Canada-Ukraine chamber of commerce held a practical export forum in Kyiv for Ukrainian companies interested in exporting apparel and footwear to Canada.

During the event, participants had the opportunity to learn more about the Canadian footwear and apparel market, get acquainted with specific features of product promoting in Canada and communicate with Canadian experts who have huge experience in cooperation with Canadian buyers and distributors. The forum brought together about 50 small and medium enterprises.

Adam Barbolet, Senior Trade Commissioner of Embassy of Canada to Ukraine welcomed the guests.

‘Canada has been and remains a reliable partner of Ukraine. The Free Trade Agreement between Canada and Ukraine (CUFTA) came in force in 2017 and has visible results in terms of trade growth between countries. For example, Ukraine has become one of the leaders of apple juice suppliers in Canada.

We are interested in further economic cooperation with Ukraine. We do hope that more and more Ukrainian small and medium-sized enterprises will be able to export their goods to Canada. We want to see these products in the Canadian market, we want to help Ukrainian business to be successful in the Canadian market,’ Adam Barbolet said.

Emma Turos, Executive Director of the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce in Ukraine and CUTIS project manager spoke about the CUTIS export portal, which will provide relevant information to Canadian and international businesses seeking reliable Ukrainian partners.

Olga Shtepa, CUTIS Project Coordinator, drew the attention of the event participants to the specifics of the Canadian business culture (download the presentation via the link). In particular, Olga Shtepa named 5 essential components for successful exports to Canada:

  • Website in English (native English)
  • Detailed costs and prices information
  • Farewell to stereotypes
  • Getting rid of misconceptions about your product or service
  • Professional presentation of own products/services

Maxim Boroda, CUTIS Senior Trade and Investment Analysis Expert, told about features, trends, and consumer preferences in the Canadian apparel & footwear market.

In 2018, Canadians spent CAD 36 billion on clothing. In particular, CAD 18 billion on women’s clothing and about CAD 11 billion on men’s clothing. By 2023, the total sales of clothing will reach CAD 43 billion, with an average annual growth rate of 3.4%. At the same time, sales of hosiery will increase faster than any other category.

Canadian consumers spent CAD 7.8 billion on shoes, in particular, CAD 3.7 billion on women’s shoes, CAD 3.1 billion on men’s and CAD 1 billion on children’s shoes. By 2023, total footwear sales will reach CAD 9.5 billion.

Sales of man’s footwear will grow faster than other categories. The reason is the increase of men’s interest in fashion trends, especially among young people, as well as the liberalization of the office dress code.

Oleksandra Brovko, CUTIS Senior Trade and Investment Policy Expert, clarified regulatory and labeling requirements for Ukrainian goods in the Canadian market. She drew the attention of the participants to the rules of origin.

Oleksandra Brovko noted that the rules of origin in the CUFTA are based on the so-called North American model, and therefore sometimes different from the rules of origin contained in other free trade agreements between Ukraine and the European and post-Soviet countries.

Zoia Pavlenko, CUTIS Environmental Expert, explained the specifics of voluntary certification of Ukrainian products for the Canadian market and argued why environmentally sustainable production practices are competitive advantages in the Canadian market.

Vira Porovska, CUTIS Gender Expert, illustrated why gender-sensitive marketing is an essential requirement of Canadian consumers.

Apparel and footwear export guides were presented during the second part of the event.

You can download apparel export guide here (in Ukrainian)

You can download footwear export guide here (in Ukrainian)

Participants also had a chance to listen to the presentations of Canadian experts as well as ask questions related to Ukrainian goods prospects in the Canadian market.

TFO Canada consultant Maria Guzman (apparel market) explained how Ukrainian producers should build mutually beneficial relationships with Canadian buyers and shared the success stories of Ukrainian companies participated in CUTIS’s U CAN Export supporting program for small and medium-sized enterprises.

TFO Canada consultant Phil Zwibel (footwear market) brought into focus the typical mistakes Ukrainian manufacturers make entering foreign markets, including Canada. The logistics issues, misunderstanding of market specifics and unwillingness to update a product to the needs of local consumers are the main challenges Ukrainian companies need to overcome.

Lviv entrepreneurs learned about new opportunities for exporting apparel and footwear to Canada

The CUTIS project, the Canada-Ukraine chamber of commerce in cooperation with Ukrlegprom association, Lviv Business School and West Ukrainian Fashion Industry Cluster held a practical seminar in Lviv for Ukrainian companies interested in exporting apparel and footwear to Canada.

During the seminar, participants had the opportunity to learn more about the Canadian footwear and apparel market, as well as to get acquainted with specific features of product promoting in Canada.

The event brought together about 30 companies specializing in women’s, men’s and children’s clothing, as well as women’s, men’s, sports and children’s footwear.

Yuriy Samets, Chairman of the Board of the Western Ukrainian Fashion Industry Cluster and Tetiana Izovit, President of Ukrlegprom association, welcomed the guests.

Emma Turos, Executive Director of the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce in Ukraine and CUTIS project manager spoke about the CUTIS export portal, which will provide relevant information to Canadian and international businesses seeking reliable potential Ukrainian partners.

Olga Shtepa, CUTIS Project Coordinator, drew the attention of the event participants to the specifics of the Canadian business culture (download the presentation via the link). In particular, Olga Shtepa named 5 essential components for successful exports to Canada:

  • Website in English (native English)
  • Detailed information on costs and prices
  • Farewell to stereotypes
  • Getting rid of misconceptions about your product or service
  • Professional presentation of own products/services

Maxim Boroda, CUTIS Senior Trade and Investment Analysis Expert, told about features, trends, and consumer preferences in the Canadian apparel & footwear market.

It’s an interesting fact, in 2018, Canadian consumers spent CAD 7.8 billion on shoes, in particular, CAD 3.7 billion on women’s shoes, CAD 3.1 billion on men’s and CAD 1 billion on children’s shoes. In 2018, shoe sales in the Canadian market have increased by 3.7% in value.

During the same period, Canadians spent CAD 36 billion on clothing, in particular, CAD 18 billion on women’s clothing and about CAD 11 billion on men’s clothing. Consequently, the women’s clothing market in Canada is almost twice the size of the men’s market.

Maxim Boroda also presented practical export guides to Canada for apparel and footwear producers.

Vira Porovska, CUTIS Gender Expert, illustrated why gender-sensitive marketing is an essential requirement of Canadian consumers.

Oleksandra Brovko, CUTIS Senior Trade and Investment Policy Expert, clarified regulatory and labeling requirements for Ukrainian goods in the Canadian market.

Zoia Pavlenko, CUTIS Environmental Expert, explained the specifics of voluntary certification of Ukrainian products for the Canadian market and argued why environmentally sustainable production practices are competitive advantages in the Canadian market.

Borys Didai, KaDar Shoe Factory (Lutsk) export manager, told about the company’s entry into the Canadian market and the challenges facing Ukrainian manufacturers in this market. You can read the full KaDar success story via the link.

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

SheChampion: Women entrepreneurs from Kherson and Chernihiv learned new life hacks about entering foreign 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 September 26, in cooperation with the Kherson Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the second #SheChampion seminar was held in Kherson, bringing together about 30 participants.

Women entrepreneurs from the Kherson region discussed gender issues in international trade, new trends in the Canadian markets and shared success stories of finding new partners in foreign markets.

Lota Bertulfo, CUTIS principal gender equality expert, made a presentation related to gender concerns in international trade. Victoria Gavrenkova (founder of agricultural companies Kaissa, Sun Light, BBBV), Natalia Yavorskaya (manager of the honey section of LLC “Sodruzhestvo”) and Yevgeniia Lukash (founder of LLC “EvgaKids”, children’s clothing) shared their export stories and gave practical advice for export-oriented businesses based on the previous experience. 

On October 3, the second #SheChampion seminar was held in Chernihiv in cooperation with the Chernihiv Chamber of Commerce and Industry. About 30 women entrepreneurs participated in the event.

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.

In particular, Maksym Boroda, CUTIS Senior Trade and Investment Policy Expert, paid attention to major trends in the Canadian footwear, clothing, furniture, and confectionery markets.

Besides, such significant business issues as cybersecurity and the importance of choosing the right digital systems for business development were discussed. 

Similar events are planned in other regions of Ukraine. The next seminar will be in Vinnytsia on October 10. So keep an eye on the updates.

SheChampion: women entrepreneurs from Ivano-Frankivsk region discussed barriers in business and trade

Women entrepreneurship is often faced visible and/or invisible barriers. They may be related to external factors such as business development or entrance the international markets as well as internal barriers, for example, gender stereotypes in Ukrainian society.

To overcome these barriers and create a space for communication and knowledge sharing, a series of #SheChampion seminars is being organized by the CUTIS project in cooperation with regional chambers of commerce and industry.

The first meeting, held on April 11 in Ivano-Frankivsk, united more than 40 businesswomen, public organization representatives, and local authorities.

During the meeting, Vira Porovska, a gender expert of the CUTIS project presented a gender-based analysis of export barriers for small and medium-sized women businesses in 5 industries (apparel, footwear, confectionary, furniture, and IT services). Ms. Porovska also paid attention to those spheres where the number of women entrepreneurs is negligible.

Yevhen Sozansky, partner of Xtheta Management, an official partner of the Shopify platform, made an overview of international e-commerce and presented the platform’s capabilities for small business development.

Ostap Pavliuk, owner of West Trade Group (medicinal plants) shared his own experience in developing exports to new challenging markets.

Similar events are planned in other regions of Ukraine. Next seminar will be in Chernigiv. Do not miss your chance!

Video: webinar “A taste of GroYourBiz”

Check out the video of “GroYourBiz” webinar as a part of the Export Promotion Office’s She Exports platform.

GroYourBiz is a Canadian initiative that offers women entrepreneurs access to monthly group consultations with proven experts from leading private sector organizations such as Bank of Montreal, TELUS, and others.

Experts work together to encourage and support small and medium-sized businesses. More about GroYourBiz can be found at: http://groyourbiz.com/

During the webinar, Barbara Mowat, Founder & President of GroYourBiz, MyBusinessMyBoard™ Advisory Boards, along with Frances Mannarino, GroYourBiz advisor spoke on how women’s business advisory boards work in Canada, and also shared their experience of creating and developing GroYourBiz .

The partner of the event was the Canada-Ukraine Trade and Investment Support Project (CUTIS), implemented by the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce and the Conference Board of Canada and funded by the Government of Canada through the Global Affairs Canada.

Guidance note: Why Integrate Gender in Trade and Investment Promotion?

This guidance note, produced by the Canada-Ukraine Trade and Investment Support (CUTIS) project, explains why gender equality cannot be ignored in trade liberalization agendas. Key gender gaps in terms of women’s economic agency are identified as well as ways in which they can be effectively addressed in the Ukrainian context.

Download the full document here.

About the author

Barb MacLaren is an Ottawa-based research consultant working in international development. Barb’s research interests include gender equality, trade, migration, and development issues. Currently, Barb is working as a gender specialist for the Canada-Ukraine Trade and Investment Support project.

To contact the author please e-mail at maclaren@conferenceboard.ca

Video: She Talks with Diane Francis

Watch a video of the “How can women succeed in the modern world” She Talks event with Diane Francis, a world-renowned award-winning columnist, best-selling author, investigative journalist, television commentator and screenplay writer from Canada. Currently Diane is Editor-at-Large at Canada’s National Post and non-resident Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council. She is an expert on Silicon Valley, future technology, geopolitics, energy, business and white collar crime.

In her speech, Diane overviewed women’s rights and achievements in her lifetime, gave examples of women successes in business and other fields, outlined the main challenges faced by contemporary women, and gave advice on how women can succeed in the modern world.

The event was organized by Export Promotion Office in partnership with Canada-Ukraine Trade and Investment Support Office, funded by the Government of Canada through Global Affairs Canada.

See some photos from the event below:

(Closed) Vacancy: CUTIS is looking for a part-time gender expert

The Conference Board of Canada (CBoC) is implementing the Canada-Ukraine Trade and Investment Support (CUTIS) Project funded by Global Affairs Canada to increase exports from Ukraine to Canada and investment from Canada to Ukraine. CUTIS Kyiv office is seeking candidates to fill part-time position of Ukrainian Gender Equality Expert. The successful candidate will work closely with the Canadian gender expert and Ukrainian beneficiaries (GofU, export promotion office, business associations, businesses in priority sectors) to implement a multi-year Gender Equality Strategy.

Main Responsibilities:

  • Implement field research within the SME sector about gender gaps in export industries. Design and conduct research activities, as needed;
  • Coordinate, co-author and edit knowledge reports with gender equality recommendations on policy-relevant subjects;
  • Design and deliver capacity build program and activities for public and private sector stakeholders relating to women’s empowerment in business and trade;
  • Engage gender and trade stakeholders in Ukraine (women’s business associations, relevant government agencies and civil society NGOs, etc.);
  • Coordinate logistics for events, chair meetings and webinars;
  • Participate in project planning and reporting and provide requested input.

Skills and Qualifications:

  • Master’s degree in public policy, economics, sociology, management, or a relevant undergraduate degree plus a minimum 3 years’ relevant professional experience;
  • Proven experience planning and delivering capacity building and training programs and events of a professional nature;
  • Experience of coordinating knowledge-sharing events, including hosting and chairing meetings;
  • Experience authoring reports about gender equality issues;
  • Excellent interpersonal, team building and presentation skills;
  • Excellent written and verbal communication in English and Ukrainian;
  • Experience working with international donors in Ukraine; with Canadian cooperation, an asset.

Qualified candidates should submit applications by September 10, 2017 to kryzhkov@cutisproject.org. Applications must include: a CV (max. 5 pages), 1 or 2 writing samples or report, and a letter of interest. We thank all applicants, however only short-listed candidates will be contacted.