Bangladesh Women Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BWCCI) organized a launching ceremony of “2020:Empower 5000” at CIRDAP Auditorium in the capital on Wednesday.
The program was chaired by Ms. Selima Ahmad, President of Bangladesh Women Chamber of Commerce & Industry while Ms. Sangita Ahmed, Immediate Past President of Bangladesh Women Chamber of Commerce & Industry was also present.
Ms. Ayesha Khanam, President of Bangladesh Mohila Parishad and Advocate Sultana Kamal, Executive Director of Ain-o-Salish Kendro and Advisor to former caretaker government participated in the event as discussants. Ms. Geeteara Safia Chowdhury, Chairman of Adcomm Ltd. and Advisor to former caretaker government and Ms. Waseqa Ayesha Khan, honorable Member of the Parliament was present as guest speakers. The launching ceremony was sponsored by Janata Bank Limited.
In her welcome speech Ms. Sangita Ahmed said that Bangladesh has made notable development progress in many areas but significant gaps still remain in the areas of economic and social opportunity for women. She said that as the time limit to achieve MDGs is going to end very soon i.e. in 2015, therefore, it is the high time to decide what commitments should be included in the post MDG agenda for women development and empowerment.
Presenting the keynote of ‘Empower 5000’ BWCCI’s President Ms. Selima Ahmad said that 5000 is just a start. If Bangladesh wants to become a mid income country, micro level women entrepreneurs must get comprehensive and structured support to flourish as successful entrepreneurs. In this way, they can have their own identity by having legal status, will have control over her income and decision making, if they earn more money they will be under tax net and will give tax and VAT, contribute more to the economy.
Then she stated the main thematic areas BWCCI is going to work to empower 5000 women into entrepreneurship and leadership which are- 1. Capacity Development 2. Product development 3. Marketing 4. Research & Development 5. Leadership development 6. Export market promotion 7. Facilitating access to Finance 8. Advocacy 9. ICT, E- Commerce and Digitalization 10. Environment conservation 11. Reduce gender disparities 12. Sexual and Reproductive Health & Rights (SRHR).
She convened the Government, national and international communities to come forward to contribute in achieving this goal.
While praising BWCCI’s initiative Advocate Sultana Kamal said that not only from micro to SME, it is also important that women entrepreneurs intervene in big industries and in diversified sectors.
Ms. Ayesha Khanam said that when woman advances, the nation does too. BWCCI has taken a time befitting initiative to develop women entrepreneurs to the next level, with that our country will also move forward inch by inch.
Ms. Geetiara Safia Chowdhury said that the main thematic areas that BWCCI has identified are justified and need to be addressed if nation wants to develop.
Ms. Waseqa Ayesha Khan, in her speech, expressed her support to BWCCI’s endeavors in promoting women entrepreneurship.
The logo of ‘2020: Empower 5000’ was also digitally launched at the event.