Islamabad: Islamabad Women’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry (IWCCI) has urged the government to promote women empowerment to ensure rapid social and economic development.
It also asked the business community to match their words with action over the empowerment of women for the sake of future generations.
This was observed during a workshop organized by IWCCI which was conducted by the chamber’s consultant Sara Ansari. The businesswomen observed that the companies run by women face difficulties while dealing with the state-run or privately owned businesses.
Businesswomen are discouraged as they are provided little space for participation in economic activities which results in losses and frustration. The IWCCI members said that society should enable women to thrive in an environment that empower their strengths which would lead to increased performance and productivity levels which will benefit the country.
Financial services institutions in Pakistan neglect women as a potential customer segment and fail to understand their needs. Only seven percent of women have a financial services account in Pakistan as compared to 36 percent in Bangladesh, 77 percent in India and 58 percent in Saudi Arabia. The only country in the world that is performing worse than Pakistan is South Sudan.
Female entrepreneurs need access to a broad range of financial services, including savings, credit, insurance, and transfers to establish and grow their businesses but they are denied the opportunities.
The former governments made laudable commitments which were not backed with the requisite financial and political support but we are hopeful that things will improve during the current government, they hoped.