In 2016, the EBRD signed an agreement with the European Commission to provide business advice, information, training and other support to small and medium-sized enterprises in Ukraine under the EU4Business initiative. In 2017-2018, CSIL worked with EBRD providing specific insights from the furniture industry, which is one of the target sectors for the support.
The assignment aimed to strengthen SME support infrastructure by developing a roadmap to improve the furniture sector's growth and competitiveness and fully implement the free trade agreement between the EU and Ukraine. In particular, CSIL investigated possible effects on the competitive landscape in the domestic market, the Ukrainian productive value chain, the competitiveness of Ukraine furniture production both domestically and in the export markets.
CSIL developed an action plan that provided a coherent and coordinated framework for designing and implementing initiatives addressing the furniture sector to overcome the fragmentation of past programmes.
At the end of the study, the EBRD invited CSIL in Kyiv to present a proposal for a strategy and roadmap for the development of the Ukrainian furniture industry. Over 40 stakeholders from different Ukrainian regions and segments of the national furniture value chain registered to discuss the proposed roadmap, and the action plan received large support.