News Tag: Canada
A five-year story of change: the CUTIS project shares its outcomes

Traditionally, the end of the year is a time to assess annual progress and review results. The CUTIS project has an even more ambitious goal. We want to summarize not only the challenging year 2020, but all five years of the project’s activities in Ukraine.

The best way to do this is by sharing real-life stories that capture the impact CUTIS has had on the people, institutions, organizations, and communities that the project has reached.

CUTIS was designed to support higher sustainable economic growth in Ukraine by increasing exports from Ukraine to Canada and investment from Canada to Ukraine. It focused its efforts on assisting Ukrainian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), in particular those led by women and those wishing to improve their environmental performance.

The stories of change were divided into the following five themes:

Improving evidence-based information and analysis to support sound decision making

Improving trade and investment linkages between Ukraine and Canada

Supporting the Canada-Ukraine Free Trade Agreement (CUFTA)

Supporting gender equality

Supporting environmental sustainability

We believe that our partner organizations—Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce; Ministry of Economic Development, Trade and Agriculture; Export Promotion Office; regional chambers of commerce and industry; and UkraineInvest—will continue to strengthen the Canada–Ukraine trade and investment relationship and deliver many more success stories in the years ahead.

Canadian Meetup at Lviv IT Arena: a new stage of cooperation between Canadian and Ukrainian ICT companies

The Government of Canada continues to support the development of the Ukrainian ICT sector and promotes fruitful cooperation between Canada and Ukraine in the field of communication technologies.

Canada was once again represented at the largest technology conference in Ukraine and Eastern Europe, Lviv IT Arena. This time as the exclusive partner of the event.

The Embassy of Canada to Ukraine (Trade Commissioner Service) in cooperation with the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce (CUCC) and the CUTIS project, organized a Canadian Meetup. More than 60 companies from different regions of Canada (including Tektelic and BlackBerry) attended the event in a virtual format. Circa 20 key-noted speakers shared their experience and took part in the discussion.

The event was attended by the Ambassador of Canada to Ukraine Larysa Galadza. The online discussion was moderated by Kadie Ward, founder of Build Strong Cities.

“A huge advantage of a virtual conference is that there are no borders or distances. The digital format has brought together almost all the key players of the Canadian ICT sector who would not otherwise be able to attend. The Canadian meetup was the longest in terms of time and had the largest number of representatives from the Canadian ICT industry,” Olga Shtepa, CUTIS project coordinator said.

Adam Barbolet and Yury Mardak from the Trade Commissioner Service, the Embassy of Canada to Ukraine, representatives of the Embassy of Canada to Germany, Ontario Ministry of Economic Development, Jobs Creation and Trade, as well as top management of leading ICT companies from Ukraine and Canada addressed Canada-Ukraine cooperation issues and opportunities.

According to Emma Turos, Executive Director of the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce and CUTIS Project Manager, a virtual meeting was attended by Ukrainian companies that already have expertise in working with Canada for several years, for example, ISSP. The companies shared real success stories, discussed the possibilities of localizing business in Canada and the challenges in finding sources of funding. N-iX company provided the analysis of Ukrainian ICT sector achievements.

There is a significant contribution from both the CUTIS project, which gave these companies a chance to gain such experience and CUCC, which was the first Canadian organization they turned to, Emma Turos added.

“The potential for cooperation between the countries is huge. It has even increased due to the pandemic. COVID-19 creates new challenges for business and government institutions around the world. Successful problem-solving depends largely on the speed and efficiency of the implementation of new solutions and technologies, especially in ICT. This includes cloud services, virtual platforms, and cybersecurity. The challenges are so powerful that it is possible to counter them only by uniting the efforts of specialists from both countries,” Olga Shtepa concluded.

Opportunities and Challenges of Virtual Trade Shows. How to get maximum effectiveness – webinar

The CUTIS project and the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce (CUCC) hold online training for export-oriented small and medium-sized businesses.

The main goal is to increase SMEs’ understanding of how effectively participate in virtual trade shows as the only way to show the products internationally, establish new linkages, find buyers, and export successfully.

Keynote speakers

Maria Guzman, Trade Facilitation Office (TFO)’s International Trade Expert, shared her expert’s experience, including challenges, on how to participate in virtual shows most effectively; how to build trust and successful sustainable business relations with Canadian buyers virtually.

  • What to consider by attending as a visitor or exhibitor? Advantages and disadvantages, challenges of the virtual format
  • How to search for buyers, consumers?
  • How to figure out the competitors and conduct the market research in virtual format (assortment, prices)?
  • What are the communicating opportunities with main stakeholders depending on the virtual platform?

Download the presentation.

John Banker, Group Show Director, Apparel Textile Sourcing Trade Shows, explained:

  • What is unique about virtual ATS?
  • What to expect for a visitor of a virtual trade show?
  • Panel session Made in Ukraine: practical tips for Ukrainian exporters

Olga Shtepa, CUTIS project coordinator (Kyiv), discussed the recent virtual conferences – Collision and Lviv IT Arena Conference, which focused on the service sector. Canadian MeetUp at Lviv IT Arena brings together more than 100 Canadian and Ukrainian ICT companies.

Download the presentation.

Marie Nazar, CUTIS project coordinator (Toronto), shared her impressions of the participation of Ukrainian companies at SIAL, the largest food and equipment exhibition in North America. The companies participated in the show as a part of the CUTIS’ support program for export-oriented SMEs.

Download the presentation.

Made in Ukraine panel at Canada’s largest virtual apparel and textile exhibition

Ukrainian companies to present their products and share their experience of entering the Canadian market as part of Made in Ukraine panel at the largest apparel and textiles virtual trade show, Apparel Textile Sourcing (ATS). 

When? October 27, 16.00-17.00 (Kyiv time)/ 10 am Eastern Time

Who? The Ukrainian delegation consists of four well-known apparel and footwear manufacturers:

  • Olteks (women’s and men’s outerwear)
  • Ajour (lingerie)
  • Kadar (women’s and men’s leather shoes)
  • Realpaks (women’s and men’s rubber shoes)

The panel will address the following issues:

  • Specific feature of the Canadian apparel and footwear market
  • Challenges facing Ukrainian companies entering the Canadian market
  • Competitive advantages of Ukrainian products in Canada within the Free trade agreement between Canada and Ukraine (CUFTA).

Emma Turos, Managing Director, Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce, will talk about the successful experience of Ukrainian companies participating in offline and online exhibitions in Canada, as well as the challenges of cooperation with Canadian buyers and distributors in COVID-19 time.

To FREE participate in the panel please follow the link.

Ukrainian companies may also attend the trade show and Made in Ukraine panel FOR FREE. All you need is to register as a visitor. 

The Apparel Textile Sourcing (ATS) exhibition, one of the largest international apparel and textile sourcing events, will connect thousands of buyers and manufacturers from all over the world with two virtual trade shows.

The ATS October 26-30 event will have an educational and market focus on global and Canadian trade issues with special attention on free trade agreements, sustainability and COVID-19.

In addition to the panel, four Ukrainian manufacturers will be represented in the virtual booth Made in Ukraine (Olteks, Ajour, Kadar, Realpaks).

The ATS November 16-20 event will feature panels and sessions focused on global suppliers and USA buyers. Analysts, economists, influencers and experts will recap 2020 and provide advantages to seek out in 2021.

To get more information and register, please follow the link.

The Do’s and Don’ts of Canadian Business Culture – a virtual round table

The CUTIS project and the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce (CUCC) held a virtual round table for small and medium-sized businesses.

SMEs learned how socially responsible business best practices can help SMEs to develop long-lasting relationships with Canadian business partners.

Maria Guzman, Trade Facilitation Office (TFO)’s International Trade Expert, explained:

  • How to build trust and sustainable business relations with Canadian buyers?
  • With cultural differences among buyers, what makes Canadian buyers unique compared to EU and US buyers?
  • Dos and Don’ts in communicating with Canadian buyers: Learning from experience

Download Maria’s presentation

Michael Hopkins, International CSR Expert, Director of MHC International Ltd, discussed CSR standards and best examples in FMCG (fast-moving consumer goods) sectors in North America.

The participants may learn:

  • What are the three main factors that buyers look for in potential suppliers?
  • What are the business risks of ignoring CSR?
  • Does CSR help to differentiate a supplier’s product brand?

Download Michael’s presentation

Olga Shtepa, CUTIS project coordinator, described what are the main lessons learned for Ukrainian SMEs in dealing with Canadian buyers (based on CUTIS experience)?

Moreover, Ukrainian SMEs who have already successfully implemented CSR practices shared their stories of entering new markets and dealing with international buyers’ audits.

Emma Turos, Managing Director of the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce, described the benefits of CUCC business practices and services for members and supporters on the Canadian market.

Ukrainian companies may attend two North American apparel virtual trade shows for free

The Apparel Textile Sourcing (ATS) exhibition, one of the largest international apparel and textile sourcing events, will connect thousands of buyers and manufacturers from all over the world with two virtual trade shows.

The virtual events will take place live online on October 26-30 and November 16-20. These state-of-the-art digital events will connect more than 300 manufacturers and suppliers from over a dozen countries and regions with attendees and buyers from Canada, the USA, Latin America, Europe, Australia.

Ukrainian companies may attend the trade shows FOR FREE.

The ATS October 26-30 event will have an educational and market focus on global and Canadian trade issues with special attention on free trade agreements, sustainability and COVID-19.

The ATS November 16-20 event will feature panels and sessions focused on global suppliers and USA buyers. Analysts, economists, influencers and experts will recap 2020 and provide advantages to seek out in 2021.

The attendances will get:

  • Free sourcing, education, matchmaking & more.
  • Interactive seminars from apparel & sourcing industry experts.
  • Exhibits from North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia & the Middle East.
  • Live chats, virtual networking, engagement made simple.

To get more information and register, please follow the link.

Apparel Textile Sourcing trade shows are a global industry destination that provides a unique platform for manufacturers, distributors, apparel & fabric buyers, merchandisers, retail chains to find new business contacts, share experiences, learn new ideas and create business opportunities.

Ukrainian apparel products were presented at ATSC three times and caught the interest of Indian, Chinese and Pakistani companies, which considered the possibility of locating production capacity in Ukraine.

For the first time in a virtual format. Ukrainian confectioners take part in the largest North American food exhibition

Two well-known Ukrainian food producers – Bob Snail (natural candies “Snail Bob”) and Malbi (chocolate products “Millennium”) represent Ukraine at SIAL Canada 2020, the largest exhibition of food, equipment and technology in North America.

From September 28 to October 2, SIAL Canada will be a unique virtual platform for communication between leading players of the North American agri-food market.

Ukraine will be represented at SIAL Canada for the third time. This year, for the first time, Ukrainian manufacturers are getting acquainted with Canadian and American consumers and buyers in an innovative virtual format. Such participation became possible through the support of the CUTIS project and the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce (CUCC).

Ukrainian companies are presented at the exhibition via customized 3D stands, where future Canadian and American partners may get all the necessary information for further cooperation. Besides, a series of B2B meetings are planned with key Canadian distributors and retailers.

In total, according to the organizers, more than 25 thousand visitors will take part in the virtual exhibition, more than 1.5 thousand B2B meetings will be held.

“Pioneering in the new online world and participating in such virtual shows like SIAL 2020 in Montreal, CUTIS project mobilized the Ukrainian companies which are capable to make a contribution to the economic recovery of our industry and export. We explore opportunities for the new format of communication and reenergize entrepreneurship,” Emma Turos, Managing Director at CUCC and Project Manager at CUTIS project, say.

“It is nice to mention that CUTIS and CUCC are helping Ukrainian businesses to adapt to the new business reality and find new partners overseas. In conditions when the borders between counties are actually closed. Such activities contribute to the development of not only specific companies but also the entire food industry and the economy of Ukraine in general, ” Ms. Emma continues.

Ukrainian confectionery producers present their products at SIAL Canada for the third time as a part of the CUTIS U CAN EXPORT support program for Ukrainian SMEs. We are confident that, as in previous years, Ukrainian products will receive positive reviews from demanding Canadian retailers and distributors.

Stay tuned!

How to Increase Business Competitiveness with Socially Responsible Practices

The CUTIS project and the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce hold a virtual round table for small and medium-sized businesses.

Michael Hopkins, Co-Founder and Fellow of Institute for Responsible Leadership (London), explained:

  • What is a socially responsible business (CSR)? How can SMEs implement CSR practices?
  • What is personal social responsibility?
  • Does treating your company’s key stakeholders responsibly make your business more competitive?
  • How to select your company’s key stakeholders and how to interact with them?

You can download Michael’s presentation via a link (in English).

Emma Turos, Executive Director of the Ukrainian office of the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce, provided practical tips (for Ukrainian SMEs) to adopt socially responsible business in operational and labour practices.

Moreover, Ukrainian businesswomen who have already successfully implemented CSR practices shared their success stories.

Yevheniya Lukash, the owner of Evgakids, children’s clothing company, shared her experience on how the positive interaction/collaboration with a competitor (i.e., external stakeholder) has strengthened her business.

Ruslana Ryamarska, the owner of the family-run bakery Budmo Zdorovi (Smakuli cookies) shared her company’s experience, including challenges, in implementing socially responsible employee practices (i.e., internal stakeholders).

Top-5 interesting facts about international trade between Canada and Ukraine

The Canada-Ukraine Free Trade Agreement came into force on August 1, 2017. Starting from August 2017, Ukraine eliminated import duties on more than 70% of imports from Canada.

For other agricultural and industrial products, Ukraine will gradually open its market over transitional periods of 3, 5 or 7 years. Canada immediately eliminated tariffs on 98% of Ukrainian goods.

What are the main results for businesses in targeted sectors after three years of free trade between Canada and Ukraine?

  1. Canada’s exports to Ukraine with the largest increases include fish and seafood, machinery and mechanical appliances, motor vehicles and parts, meat, and electronics. For example, in June 2020, Ukraine was the fourth‑largest destination by volume for Canadian fish and seafood exports.
  2.  In 2019, Canada supplied 70% of Ukraine’s total imports of frozen crustaceans, cold‑water shrimps and prawns.
  3. In 2019, Ukraine also imported from Canada almost half of the prepared cranberries (46% of total imports) and 20% of diamonds.
  4. Canada’s imports from Ukraine that have expanded the most include iron and steel, electronics, and preparations of vegetables.
  5. Ukraine supplied 26% of Canada’s total imports of apple juice and 6% of snow‑skis in 2019.

According to Canadian experts, Canadian businesses that produce vehicles, engines, turbines, airplanes and turbo‑jets, petroleum gases, ethylene polymers, rubber, wood pulp, and meat have the strong economical potential in Ukraine.

At the same time, Canada offers more competitive prices for Ukrainian companies producing air conditioners, unwrought silver, cobalt, uncoated paper and paperboard, narrow woven fabrics, machinery and parts, fork‑lifts and other work trucks.

You can find more information via the link.

How to prepare for a virtual trading mission – video

The COVID-19 epidemic is making adjustments to export activities. Traditional personal communication during industry events or trade missions is replaced with virtual video conferencing, messengers and online platforms. This is where significant benefits for Ukrainian producers appear.

Why won’t the virtual format of meetings disappear after the end of the epidemic? The reason is obvious: it is beneficial to meet online given the saving of time and money.

A properly prepared and successfully conducted virtual meeting is a guarantee of mutually beneficial business relations in the future. Everything is like in a theatre here: you have to dedicate a lot of time, sweat and blood in preparation, training and coaching to enjoy a moment of glory on stage in the spotlight.

Olga Shtepa, CUTIS project coordinator, who has huge experience in organizing virtual negotiations with Canadian business, explains how to properly prepare for participation in a virtual trade mission and what kind of challenges you may face (in Ukrainian).