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Swiss Import Promotion Program (SIPPO)

The Swiss Import Promotion Programme (SIPPO) is a well-established mandate of the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) within the framework of its economic development cooperation. As for the new investment phase (2017-2020), SIPPO is carried out by Swisscontact, a business–orientated Swiss foundation for international development cooperation. Swisscontact collaborates with sub-contracting (BHP Brugger & Partner, Helvetas) and collaboration partners (IPD, CBI, IHA) to strengthen its worldwide service delivery and capacity building competencies.
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11 beneficiary countries: Columbia, Peru, South Africa, Indonesia, Tunisia, Morocco, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia and Serbia.
6 sectors: Fish & Seafood, Processed Fruits & Vegetables, Natural Ingredients, Technical Wood, Value-added Textiles, Sustainable Tourism.
Sectors for Bosnia and Herzegovina: Natural Ingredients, Technical Wood, Value-added Textiles.

Overall goal

SIPPO promotes sustainable and inclusive trade thereby building on its core values respect, partnership-based cooperation and integrity as established by its code of conduct. 
The overall objective is to integrate developing and transition countries into world trade. Targeted export promotion services delivered through Business Support Organizations (BSOs) strengthen the competitive position and facilitate market access and exports of companies in partner countries to Switzerland, the EU and regional markets.

SIPPO shifts to a more systematic market approach by putting BSOs instead of individual companies) in partner countries into the center of the programme to provide professional ‘last mile services’ for exporting companies.


Accordingly, SIPPO enhances the performance of selected BSOs in order to enable them to provide targeted export promotion services to improve exports in specific economic sectors and contribute to increased income and more and better jobs. 
The implementation of the approach will be decentralized, utilizing local knowledge and developing high commitment of local actors. In addition, it shall create synergies by delivering export promotion services to other trade related Swiss development initiatives.

Key outputs

  • Exporters and Importers establish trade contracts
  • Exporters have the capacity to complete the last mile
  • Potential exporters access services of BSOs


  • Jobs created and retained (BSOs and companies)
  • Increase in export turnover (companies)
  • Increased number of binding offers (companies)
  • Strengthened BSOs

For importers related to:

  • Market intelligence, e.g. sector analysis & market research
  • Facilitation for trade fair participation & buyer missions
  • Market development (importer forum, exporter database)

For BSOs and exporters related to:

  • Market intelligence, e.g. sector analysis, assessment and market research
  • Capacity building of potential exporters through training or e-learning tools
  • Facilitation for trade fair participation & selling missions.

Collaboration Platform

A web-based SIPPO Collaboration Platform on country level and worldwide is established to bundle and making relevant information for BSOs & potential exporters each accessible:

  • Peer-to-peer learning
  • Easy administration for accreditation and licensing
  • Blended learning and global exchange

Previous phases results

During the previous SIPPO phase the following main results have been achieved by the SIPPO 2012-2016 Program (cumulative in 13 countries): Overall, 14’869 additional jobs have been created; CHF 290 million additional export turnover has been created, and 850 beneficiaries participated at trade fairs.

Strategic Domain Economic Development and Employment
Status Ongoing
Implementers Swiss Global Enterprise
Partners BiH Foreign Trade Chamber
Projects implemented in Global/regional project