ADDIS ABABA- A digital platform, ‘Ethiopia’s 50 Million African Women Speak’ (50MAWSP) which is designed to contribute to the economic empowerment of women across Africa, was kiced off here yesterday The platform is said to enable women entrepreneurs to access loan and market information they need to start or grow their businesses.
Launching the project, President Sahle-Work Zewde noted that the platform is significant in empowering women entrepreneurs to run their enterprises in a digital environment.
She further stated that due to the inaccessibility of information coupled with absence of financial services, many women are employed in the informal works. However, the availability and accessibility of this platform enable them to have sufficient information and access the required services to join the formal sector.
Filsan Abdullahi, Minister of Women, Children and Youth mentioned that the platform which is a first-of-its kind continental network will create access to several facilities such as tools for business training, mentorship in addition to financial products, and market information.
As to her, women globally engaged in “informal sector,” with insufficient payments and benefits. They are also more likely to work in industries which are hardest hit by the pandemic, such as hospitality and childcare.
Thus, the launching of the platform is also expected to assist in the realization of the targets set for women entrepreneurs’ in nation’s ten year development plan, she stressed.
Dr. Abdul B. Kamara, Deputy Director General, East African Region of African Development Bank on his part stated that the platform is critical to empower the existing entrepreneurs and those women who aspire to run their own enterprises through using digital platform.
As the COVID -19 pandemic has worsened, women in business encounter more challenges. This platform has the potential to alleviate those challenges, as to him.
The opportunities the ’50 Million African Women Speak’ platform present are immense, it was mentioned in the panel discussion.
This platform covers 38 countries across three regional economic blocs- The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), the East African Community, and the Economic Community of West African States- and funded by the African Development Bank.
The platform was first launched last year in Kigali, Rwanda in the presence of President Sahle-Work Zewde. However, following the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic, ‘Ethiopia’s 5o Million Women Speak Platform’ was postponed.
The Ethiopian herald march 19/2021