In order to better gain from the East African Community regional integration opportunities, it’s imperative for all the segments of people to understand the concept of “Integration”, what it means and how it would change people lives.
It’s in this regard that the Private Sector Federation in collaboration with the Chamber of Women Entrepreneurs and with support from Trademark East Africa-Rwanda organized a three -days’ workshop to sharpen women in business with knowledge on regional integration and how they would position themselves to tap into the available opportunities.
Under the provisions of Article 121 of the Treaty for the Establishment of the East African Community, the Partner States undertake to enhance the role of women in social- economic development.
Member states recognize that women make a significant contribution towards the process of economic transformation and sustainable growth and that it is impossible to implement effective programs for the economic and social development of the region without full participation of women.
“What we need is to ensure that women understands what EAC integration means and which kind of opportunities are available and how best Rwandan women can position themselves to benefit from these opportunities,” said Eric Kabeera, the PSF’s Head of Communications.
The women were trained in various areas including common market protocol, the Single Customs territory, and available opportunities both on central and northern corridors.
The training held in Rwamagana district attracted more than forty women across different business sectors and were trained by experts from the ministry of Trade and Industry and EAC affairs and facilitated by PSF.
Anitha Kwizera who deals in Arts and Craft mentioned that the training imperative since she intends to open up other businesses across the region.
“I plan to open up in other east African countries that’s why I need more knowledge on regional integration. I commend PSF for this initiative and I have now known a lot regarding the regional market,” she said after the training.
Women are mostly involved in cross border trade, however they need more support especially in removal of all the trade barriers in order boost their businesses. Some of the challenges they encounter includes lack of market information, limited capital as well limited skills in production.
However, with the government and other partner’s support, all these hindrances can eliminated for the betterment of regional economies.