Take advantage of government policies to establish businesses —First Lady urges women

Women should position themselves and take advantage of the numerous government business initiatives to establish their own businesses as well as expand existing ones, the First Lady, Rebecca Akufo-Addo has said.

She said research indicated that businesses headed or founded by women tend to do well and succeed.

Speaking at the launch of the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI) Women in Business (WIB) in Accra on Wednesday, Mrs Akufo-Addo said women could create their own businesses if they took advantages of the numerous business opportunities that exist in the country.

The programme was on the theme “Promoting Women Enterprises for Gender Equity towards Competitiveness.”

The AGI-WIB, among others objectives, is to serve as platform for women entrepreneurs to engage government and other stakeholders and advocate for policies for promoting the cause of women entrepreneurs.

She said women needed to be supported to make their businesses succeed because women were underrepresented in the business community and thus were not given enough space to contribute to decision making.

The First Lady encouraged women entrepreneurs to be proactive to meet the growing competition and trends in the local and international market, and also urged successful women entrepreneurs to mentor and serve as role model for young women in the country.

The First Lady pledged her support to the association in particular and women in general for them to succeed in their business endeavours, saying that “I will do what I can to promote the business of Ghanaian women.”

The President of AGI, Dr Yaw Adu Gyamfi said the decision to form the women wing of the association was mooted earlier this year and all the council members of the AGI overwhelmingly supported the idea.

He said this was the first time AGI was forming an association of women within the organisation, saying “I am happy this is taking place during my presidency.”

“The fact that the AGI was founded by a woman, Dr Esther Ocloo emphasise the need for special attention to be given to women in AGI,” he said.

Dr Gyamfi said the formation of the association would help to influence government policy and urged all women businesses in the country to join the association.

The Chairperson of the AGI-WIB, Grace Amey-Obeng in her remarks said the AGI-WIB was not an independent group, but an umbrella association within AGI.

She said the formation of the association was to provide a forum for women to influence government policies and enhance the contribution of women in the economic development of the country.

“The AGI-WIB group also seeks to harness the strength and potential of its members to create a united front for women entrepreneurs,” Mrs Amey-Obeng said.

The Chief Executive Officer of Vodafone Ghana, Patricia Obo-Nai expressed regret the low representation of women in the business space.

By Kingsley Asare

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