Project profile — APEC-Canada Growing Business Partnership - Research and Training


Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada (CA-CRA_ACR-2118791144)
2016-09-08 - 2021-05-31
Global Affairs Canada
OGM Indo-Pacific

Country / region 

• Indonesia (23.89%)
• Peru (23.89%)
• Philippines (23.89%)
• Vietnam (23.88%)
• Asia, regional (4.45%)


• Business And Other Services: Business support services and institutions (25010) (25.00%)
• Industry: Small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) development (32130) (25.00%)
• Trade policy and administrative management:
Trade policy and administrative management (33110) (10.00%)
Trade facilitation (33120) (10.00%)
Regional trade agreements (RTAs) (33130) (10.00%)
Trade-related adjustment (33150) (10.00%)
Trade education/training (33181) (10.00%)

Policy marker 

• Gender equality (significant objective)
• Environmental sustainability (cross-cutting) (not targeted)
• Participatory development and good governance (not targeted)
• Trade development (principal objective)
• Biodiversity (not targeted)
• Climate change mitigation (not targeted)
• Climate Change Adaptation (not targeted)
• Urban issues (not targeted)
• Desertification (not targeted)
• Children's issues (not targeted)
• Youth Issues (not targeted)
• Indigenous Issues (not targeted)
• Disability (not targeted)
• ICT as a tool for development (not targeted)


This initiative seeks to reduce poverty in developing Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) economies by encouraging micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to expand into global and regional markets. The project consists of two main components: MSME Support and Research and Training. The Research and Training component implemented by the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada provides training, research and mentoring to MSMEs in developing APEC economies of Indonesia, Vietnam, the Philippines and Peru. For example, Canada’s support funded the research studies, surveys, conferences, training and mentoring focused on business and entrepreneurship skills, access to markets for products and services, and technological innovation. The MSME Support component of the project is a sub-fund managed by the APEC Secretariat that supports small-scale projects helping MSMEs in developing APEC economies to innovate, grow, and gain better access to global and regional markets. The two components have a combined contribution amount of $4.79 million.

Expected results 

The expected outcome for the Research and Training component of the project is: Canadian MSME policy, research and management best practices applied to the context of developing APEC economies in a manner that directly supports poverty reduction, green growth and women’s economic empowerment.

Results achieved 

Results achieved as of the end of the project (June 2021) include: (1) completed four surveys and twelve research studies with a thematic focus on the challenges faced by MSMEs, human capital for Indonesia, social entrepreneurship for Peru, market access for the Philippines and technology and innovation for Vietnam, which resulted in a suite of policy recommendations presented to the lawmakers from APEC developing economies at the project Capstone Conference in May 2021; (2) applied Canadian MSME policy, research and management best practices to the context of the developing APEC economies of Indonesia, Philippines, Peru and Vietnam to help provide an enabling environment for MSME growth, poverty reduction, green sustainable growth, and women’s economic empowerment; (3) 68 women leaders of micro-small-medium enterprises, 19 each from Indonesia and Vietnam, and 15 each from the Philippines and Peru, completed the 12-month Mentoring Women in Business Programme with their respective Canadian MSME champion-mentors. All 68 women MSME leaders-entrepreneurs highlighted in their mentoring feedback that their participation had increased their business confidence and leadership skills and their abilities to better understand their strengths and weaknesses in enterprise management. The women entrepreneurs reported improvement in knowledge and practical application of new skills in improving their respective businesses; (4) designed and delivered four thematic-focused MSME toolkits delving into practical business ideas to address challenges on key themes addressed by the project in the four focus economies: Invest In for Indonesia, Give Back for Peru, Scale Up for the Philippines and Start-Up for Vietnam. These toolkits were written in English and in the national language of the four focus economies and published online. They continue to be used by MSME leaders-entrepreneurs as evidenced by the increasing access (more than 8,000 views) on the project website; and (5) publication and presentation of the project’s capstone policy paper, Advancing Inclusive Growth in the APEC Region: Challenges and Policy Solutions for MSMEs, to the APEC lawmakers and legislators in the four focus economies. The policy paper highlights the key findings of the Partnership throughout its five years. It provides a suite of policy recommendations in six thematic areas: Promoting Inclusive Growth, Supporting Women and Youth Entrepreneurs, Aiding MSMEs’ Digital Transformation, Securing MSMEs’ Access to Financing, Ensuring Access to MSME Support Services and Encouraging Broader Market Access.

Budget and spending 

Original budget $214,189
Planned disbursement $0
Country percentages by sector
Type of finance Aid grant excluding debt reorganisation
Collaboration type Bilateral
Type of aid Other technical assistance
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