Empretec is a flagship capacity-building programme of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) for the promotion of entrepreneurship and micro, small and medium sized enterprises (MSMEs) to facilitate sustainable development and inclusive growth.

Empretec’s core product is the Entrepreneurship Training Workshop (ETW), which aims to foster the motivation and self-confidence of participants who have chosen to start or expand their businesses. It is based on a behavioural approach, designed to unleash personal entrepreneurial potential. The methodology has proved to be effective for a vast range of target audiences in advanced and less developed economies. It works equally well for mature entrepreneurs and new entrants, opportunity and necessity entrepreneurs, participants with different levels of education. Tailor-made adaptations are made for vulnerable groups such as women, youth, retired people and participants with low literacy levels. The programme also promotes small supplier development, social and green entrepreneurship.

Empretec has a network of national Empretec centres established in 40 countries, which provides an opportunity for participants to explore international markets and establish cross border business links. The Enterprise Branch of the Division on Investment and Enterprise coordinates the programme from Geneva, Switzerland.

In the 30 years since its launch in 1988, Empretec has continuously demonstrated high impact positively affecting efficiency, sustainability and revenue generation of the participants’ businesses, resulting in their increased survival and growth rates, and the creation of new jobs.
For more information about Empretec, sub-programmes and events:
Business linkages
Empretec Women in Business Award
Empretec Global Summit


Entrepreneurship Policies for Regional Inclusive and Sustainable Development

Policy makers and representatives responsible for entrepreneurship and small and medium enterprises (SMEs) met in Kigali, on 13 and 14 December 2017 under the cooperation framework of United Nations Conference of Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the Rwanda Development Board (RDB) and Convention Bureau (RCB), and the Global Entrepreneurship Network (GEN).


Empretec Network: Impact and Success Stories

Newsletter N. 33

Empretec Annual Report 2015


XXIV Empretec Directors meeting, Geneva (6-7 December 2017)
Sixteen representatives from twelve Empretec national centres attended the XXIV annual meeting of Empretec Directors in Geneva on 6-7 December 2017. The two-day meeting provided participants with an opportunity to share experiences and products, highlight the major achievements over the past twelve months, and to discuss strategic and operational issues related to the Empretec programme.



10 – 12 May 2018

Working Sessions on Creating Ecosystems to Support SMEs and UN Sustainable Development Goals
and MSME Forum
United Nations, New York