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  • ISSUE 3/2009


  • TF: What are the biggest challenges in producing a collection from Africa?IVF: The first challenge is in supplying the group of women with the opportunity to receive on-the-job training in production, so they can become self-sufficient. Their poverty is not just material but also about a lack of know-how. Through this project they are given the possibility to acquire new skills and this is the first step towards enabling them to find their own way to autonomy. I hope that one day an entire bag will be tagged as "Made in Africa".

    Rolling Stone India and JWT: Traditional arts bring modern brands to life.When Rolling Stone launched its new Indian edition in 2007, the creative team at JWT were presented with one of the most intriguing creative briefs an advertising agency could imagine. How to make the iconic magazine look familiar - but still be iconic?

    In 1972, Fazle Hasan Abed founded the Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee (BRAC) and a holistic development model that has revolutionized income-generating opportunities for rural communities in developing countries. Through its handicraft and fashion section, Aarong, BRAC has developed a sustainable national brand that provides a livelihood in the creative industries for tens of thousands of people across Bangladesh.

    How a fashion brand with no experience in development changed the lives of a group of marginalized women in rural Cameroon.

    As the country's reputation for producing talent like Bob Marley and Jimmy Cliff attests, Jamaica is synonymous with creativity. The creative sector now accounts for 5.2 per cent of Jamaica's gross domestic product - which is more than the country's traditional mining sector.

    International Trade Forum - Issue 3/2009 The UN Pavilion at the Shanghai World Expo 2010 will include The Creative Economy Corridor - a permanent multimedia installation that will showcase how the creative industries contribute to social, economic, environmental and cultural development. Video shorts will be u

    The United Nations' Creative Economy Report 2008 demonstrates that creative industries are powerful engines for economic growth and trade development in developing countries. This is true not only in terms of direct economic impact from the sale of goods and services but, importantly, also as a multiplier in other sectors by stimulating new business opportunities and enhanced capacity.

    What are creative industries? There are differing views and much scepticism about which goods and services have been grouped into this new classification. There is no doubt, however, that modern technology has transformed delivery of services and created business models that do not charge customers, such as Google and Facebook, but which have generated huge wealth for their creators. There is no doubt either that the design industry is having a massive impact on how cultural heritage and tradition are transformed into products ranging from household goods and fashion items, to solutions for health care and new media and entertainment.In this edition of Trade Forum we explore the potential of creative industries in developing countries. Through contributions from a diverse range of international commentators, we look at issues including the impact of globalization, technology and digitization, and the promotion and financing of creative industries in emerging economies. We also look at the opportunities that have been created through engagement with the corporate sector and creative industries, such as film and fashion, in developed countries.

    Interactive web portal: Connecting creative communities Artisanconnect is an interactive web portal, launched with the support of ITC and the Netherlands' Centre for Promotion of Imports from developing countries (CBI), to connect artisans and experts in creative and indigenous crafts and provide them with a platform for sharing their experiences and information. While initial content was provided by ITC, the success of the portal, which is based on Web 2.0 technology, will depend on its users who have easy access to adding or modifying content. The aim is to encourage the exchange of information about craft markets, new technologies, designs and events, which has been scarce so far, particularly for French-speaking users (the portal is available in French and English).www.artisanconnect.net

    International Trade Forum - Issue 3/2009 This year, 2009, was declared European Year of Creativity and Innovation. With its key message of how creativity and innovation contribute to economic prosperity and to social and individual well-being, the campaign aimed to disseminate good practices, stimulate educat

    Through the example of HSBC's cultural exchange programme, Trade Forum looks at how corporate investment in the creative industries is driving business success and opportunity. For artists, producers and designers from emerging markets, corporate social responsibility and sponsorship programmes by multinational companies are opening the doors to global audiences.

    ITC plays a significant role in building capacity towards the export of creative products, particularly crafts, from developing and transition countries. ITC's assistance focuses on facilitating market access through new technologies and streamlining supply chains; supporting the creative sector by promoting trade opportunities and enhancing export competitiveness; as well as by encouraging the integration of the cultural dimension into national trade development policies.

    International Trade Forum - Issue 3/2009 In October 2009, ITC signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Federation of ASEAN Textile Industries (AFTEX) and the ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) Competitiveness Enhancement project (ACE), to support AFTEX with tailor-made training tools for

    In Nigeria, Kraftman Production pioneered the download of Nollywood movies on mobile phones in conjunction with platform owner 3WC and mobile carrier MTN. The launch of third-generation mobile phones in Nigeria opened up new opportunities in this area, especially as the second national carrier, GLO, is supporting movie downloads through advertising. Kraftman Production is also in the process of packaging a single Internet platform for the African continent.

    The export earnings of the world's poorest countries were slashed by up to 50 per cent over the first six months of 2009, according to latest figures from ITC. This far exceeded the damage suffered by developed countries, although their export earnings were down more than expected, falling globally by 32 per cent. The world's 49 least developed countries (LDCs) saw their earnings cut by US$ 26.8 billion as exports slumped 43.8 per cent. Sub-Saharan Africa suffered the sharpest decline in value terms: its exports to the world's most important markets crashed by 48.6 per cent (with South Africa and Nigeria accounting for 52 per cent of this decline), compared with the first six months of 2008, according to ITC's trade flow monitoring tool, Trade Map.

    Mobile technology is changing the world more quickly and profoundly than any other innovation. In emerging markets the scale of uptake and the impact on local communities are too important to be ignored.

    International Trade Forum - Issue 3/2009 Boosting Peruvian textile and clothing exports to Europe was the aim of a marketing study tour that brought a group of 12 Peruvian women entrepreneurs in the sector to Amsterdam and Paris for meetings with fashion industry buyers in October. Organized by ITC, the visit

    The evolution of the Internet and digital technology has created an open market for the distribution and sharing of intellectual properties. But in the fast-paced and ever-changing world of the digital age, how can those who work in the creative industries protect their intellectual property?

    From fashion design to film, music, architecture, art and the advertising industry, the impact of digital technology has been one of the most profound on the creative industries in recent years. New technologies, particularly in information and telecommunications, have dramatically changed the way creative products are produced, distributed and consumed globally.

    "Ethical" and "sustainable" have made it onto the agenda of the luxury fashion industry. This growing awareness among high-profile designers and the media in developed countries is setting trends that will reverberate from the catwalks to workers in emerging markets. While there is still progress to be made, increasing consumer awareness and demand are making the long-term gains for sustainable fashion optimistic.

    IDEO is a leading innovation and design firm that works with public, private and social sector clients to address organizational, social and global issues. The head of IDEO's social innovation design domain, Jocelyn Wyatt, talks to Trade Forum about the power of design to change the world.

    New technologies have fundamentally changed the global music market. The advent of digital networks as a new promotion and distribution medium means that the investments required to produce, market and distribute music is now lower than ever before, offering small recording companies unprecedented opportunities to offer their products at affordable prices for consumers.However, in many cases, piracy can still thrive in a context of expensive and archaic distribution methods, which in developing countries offer a marked contrast to the low price and general availability of pirate copies. As a consequence, earnings are sporadic and largely dependent on live performances, although the music industry contributes significantly to employment and gross domestic product figures.

    Collaboration between the United Kingdom and Moroccan film-makers is set to increase after the signing of a co-production treaty between the two countries in October 2009. With desert locations and other backdrops unavailable in Europe, Morocco is already a popular setting for many successful British films, but the treaty gives more practical reasons for cooperation between the two countries. Under the treaty, UK film-makers working with Moroccan producers will have access to a range of benefits including tax breaks, sources of funding and support.