Informal Economy

Chamber prepares for its first engagement with the informal economy in Palau

The Palau Chamber of Commerce (PCOC) will, for the first time, engage with informal sector businesses to support COVID-19 recovery.

Project documentation | 31 August 2021
The Palau Chamber of Commerce (PCOC) has commenced on the registration of business trainers, advisors and mentors in preparation for the launch of its informal sector business training, advisory and mentoring programme.

This initiative is supported by the International Labour Organization (ILO) through the UN’s Joint Informal Economies Recovery Project. The ILO, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), are jointly working with national partners, with the aim of supporting COVID-19 recovery through sustainable creative enterprises.

This will be achieved through improving access to creative skills training, business training, advisory and mentoring and e-Commerce platforms.

With the informal economy characterised by having decent work deficit, the business advisory component of the services provided by the PCOC, aims to inform informal sector MSMEs on the benefits and regulatory requirements to transit to formality.

Through a press release on 18th August 2021, Ms Irene Olkeriil, the President of the PCOC said that the aim of the project and partnership contributed to the chamber’s main goals, which were to create jobs and grow the economy of Palau.

While tourism is now open to one international market, the impact of the pandemic had a direct impact on Palau’s tourism sector. Consequently, the impact was immediately felt by all creative enterprises linked to the tourism sector value chain.

A Rapid Assessment on the impact of COVID-19 sanctioned by the ILO in 2020, found that 40% of businesses temporarily closed, 3% had permanently closed, 43% were partially open and only 14% remained fully open. In addition, 70% of businesses revealed that would close if no relief measures were provided. 55% of businesses eventually applied for government financial support.

The PCOC and the ILO is currently developing the business component of the project including the final Terms of Reference (ToR) and aims to start the implementation in mid-September 2021. The business component compliments UNESCO’s technical skills component, delivered through the Belau National Museum and UNDP’s component on enabling access to e-Commerce platforms.

Interest as a trainer, advisor and mentor, can be sent to or contact the PCOC Administrative Assistant, Ms. Jada Avesani on (680) 775-3400.