The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) – in collaboration with the Tunisian Ministry of Industry, Mines and Energy and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Libya – are conducting training for 30 Libyan youth as well as Libyan officials and NGO staff on a Japanese management improvement technique to promote economic recovery in Libya.
The so-called “Kaizen” management approach supports an environment of continuous learning, integration, and innovation in a culture of continuous improvement, based on the idea that small, ongoing positive changes can reap significant positive developments. Co-funded by JICA and WFP, the workshops take place from 27 February to 10 March, during which participants will visit model businesses that apply the Kaizen approach and benefit from it.
“We are grateful to JICA, the Government of Tunisia and the Government of Libya for their support to extend the Kaizen approach to businesses and start-ups run by Libyan youth and women,” said the Deputy Country Director of WFP in Libya Yasuyuki Misawa. “These trainings will support our participants – some of them coming from strained cities such as Benghazi and Sirte – to become a force of change and lead the development in Libya.”
This intervention is part of WFP’s efforts to promote economic and industrial recovery in Libya supporting youth inclusion through the establishment of innovative entrepreneurship programs in the country. Libya is in fact still facing significant challenges as a result of the aftermaths of the COVID-19 pandemic and the ongoing conflict in Ukraine, whose effects are weighing significantly on the local economy.
The opening ceremony of the training took place on 27 February 2023 in the presence of the Chargé d'Affaires of the Japanese Embassy to Libya H.E. Masaki Amadera, General Director of the Management Unit of the National Program of Quality and Productivity Promotion (UGPQP) Zouheir Makhloufi, Chief Representative of JICA Shuhei UENO, and the Deputy Country Director of WFP Libya Yasuyuki Misawa, as well as a representative from the Libyan Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Relations, Abdulfattah Khouja.
“We are delighted to provide Libyan entrepreneurs with this training about the Kaizen approach. Tunisia is already working with many African countries on Kaizen dissemination, but it is important to have such activities with Tunisia’s closest neighbors,” said the General Director of the UGPQP Zouheir Makhloufi.
“We are hoping to be able to work with these aspiring Libyan youth towards rebuilding their country,” said Chargé d'Affaires H.E. Amadera.
The Kaizen management philosophy offers a systematic approach to business improvements resulting in cost reduction, improved quality and productivity, and a shorter delivery time, with an approach that has proven to work in any country, culture, and sector so far.
“We wish to extend the implementation of this innovative approach to Libya, learning from previous successful experiences in the region,” said Chief Representative of JICA Shuhei UENO.