Int’l Women Entrepreneurship Summit 2018 for ‘Women Empowerment’

Nepal has an estimated 14,300 SMEs owned by women entrepreneurs holding nearly 2% GDP share
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Int’l Women Entrepreneurship Summit 2018 for ‘Women Empowerment’

Social insecurity is one of the major causes that is obstructing active women participation, says Pramila Acharya Rijal, President of the South Asian Women Development Forum (SAWDF).

SAWDF President said this on the side-lines of the three-day International Women Entrepreneurs Summit 2018 held in Kathmandu during September 3-5, 2018.

In her address at the Summit, Rijal further said the society being full of ‘insecurities’ is one factor hindering the active participation of women in the socio-economic development of the country.

She called on Nepali women entrepreneurs to explore successful enterprises that can be replicated in Nepal.

“Insecurity comes when women are not self-reliant,” said Rijal, while urging women to fight against social discrimination.

Adding to the same, Vice-President Nanda Bahadur Pun pitched on the need for effective public participation to curb illicit activities against women.

Meanwhile, Foreign Minister Gyawali said the only solution to stop such activities is empowering women financially. “Women in work or business not only help the country to reduce poverty, it also contributes to economic development,” says Gyawali.

As part of the Summit, various other leaders and entrepreneurs spoke on key areas pertaining to women empowerment and participation in the society.

They said the middlemen involvement and limited access to finance are major hurdles to the growth of women entrepreneurship.

On the side-lines of the Summit, a report entitled ‘Reflections on Policies for Women Small and Medium Entrepreneurs: Status, Challenges and Opportunities in Hindu Kush Himalayas and the SAARC Region’ was unveiled on September 04, 2018.

The report found:

  • Lack of advanced technologies, restricted access to credit & finance and the middlemen involvement in the marketing chain are hindering the growth of women entrepreneurs and their business growth
  • A patriarchal society and high level of gender disparity, both socially and economically, has held back women from growing, starting and expanding businesses
  • Women make up only 10 percent of the entrepreneurs in Nepal and Bangladesh, while it is 14 percent in India
  • Nepal has an estimated 14,300 SMEs owned by women entrepreneurs, accounting to nearly 2 percent of the nation’s GDP; they employed 2 lakh workers in 2014
  • According to the Federation of Women Entrepreneurs Association of Nepal, Kathmandu, Lalitpur and Bhaktapur together have 3,000 registered women entrepreneurs
  • Another study on women violence reports that the prevalence of gender-based violence against women has a considerable impact on economy in terms of costs and productivity at around 1.2-2 percent of GDP.

Overall, the three-day Summit called for setting up of multiple partnerships and collaborations involving international and national organizations and also address the challenges associated with promoting gender-responsive trade facilitation policies.

Hope, more such summits and high-level debates would bring more women-centric issues onto the public domain finding a right direction for their addressal.

Also Read:

International Women Entrepreneurship Summit 2018 at a Glance:Nepal International Women Entrepreneurs Summit 2018

International Women Entrepreneurs Summit 2018

International Women Entrepreneurs Summit 2018

Closing Day of International Women Entrepreneurs Summit 2018

September 5, 2018 |

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