Strengthening of the Agriculture Cooperative and the Small Medium Enterprise Sectors in Eswatini

Public engagement presentation for TAP-EDM Showcase Event

Project Update



  • Capacity development products: co-designed work plans, concept papers, and showcase presentation.


  • This initiative created new awareness of the need for the co-operative ecosystem to work together; new capacity regarding strategic planning and work plans for various unions and cooperatives in Eswatini -and new partnerships and alliances developed to support each other’s’ work and to develop synergistic projects.
  • The Co-op Union (ESWAMCU) has made significant progress with the resources co-created with the CE. Concrete plans and funding are in place to support the implementation of a revised Strategic Plan developed with the expert’s support.
  • The response after a 1-year survey following the completion of the project, indicated that the product (workplan for Co-Op to Co-Op sharing and learning and the strategic plan and relevant workplan) have been applied/implemented in their organization. They also responded that the college has identified a partner to bring together women entrepreneurs for training on co-operative business models with the goal of forming a Saving and Credit Cooperative Organization of micro-entrepreneurs.


  • TAP expert’s key influence was to raise awareness and provide practical tools and approaches to improve coordination/collaboration within and between co-ops and co-op stakeholders to: (i) leverage existing knowledge and limited resources, (ii) avoid duplicating efforts, (iii) improve alignment of support, (iv) increase effectiveness of support, and (v) increase possibility of additional funding from other donors.


  • 105 Project partners.
  • 34 Organizations in the Co-Operative Sector.
  • 220 Canadians reached through public engagement activities.


Project Profile

The Technical Assistance Partnership (TAP) initiative with one of Canada’s premier experts in cooperatives, Fiona Duguid, is working with the Government of Eswatini to strengthen the Ministry of Commerce, Industry, and Trade’s capacity to support the coop sector. 

The work will first conduct an evidence-based, gender-sensitive review of the sector; identifying its strengths, weakness, opportunities and challenges. Based on this review, Fiona and the Ministry will then co-develop actionable, relevant and appropriate tools, approaches and applications that the Ministry can use to improve the enabling environment of coops and better support their growth and sustainable development.  

Throughout the delivery of her work, Ms. Duguid is promoting women and young people as key participants in the coop movement and that, by fully engaging them as collaborators and champions, there is real opportunity to revitalize and transform the coop sector.