Rwanda, Kenya women to launch a business forum

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By Dias Nyesiga
A hundred Rwandan and Kenyan female entrepreneurs are meeting in Kigali next week to launch a regional forum that will allow them compete with their male fellows.
In a conference organized by Kenyan National chamber of commerce and Rwanda private sector federation (PSF), the women will on July 25-29, discuss access to credit, business mentorship, financial literacy and self-confidence.
“We believe that our region needs to leapfrog its intra trade, grow more local small and medium enterprises, with women at the helm,” Mary Muthoni the Chairperson of Women in Business Committee of Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and industry told KT Press on Friday.
“Women should hence be empowered in order to be at the fore front of trade initiatives.”
In the conference, the women will create an East African Women in Business Forum, which, Muthoni said, will help women to play a leading role in business across Africa.
According to Rwanda central bank statistics, females accessed over Rwf 17 million (23.8 percent) in the fourth quarter of 2015 from microfinance sector compared to Rwf 50 million accessed by men.
Judith Aguga Acon, the technical director of Access to Finance Rwanda, a consultancy firm says forums such as this bridges the gap between women, policy makers and financial institutions and spur their participation in business.
The forum will be occasioned with a daylong business forum, mini exhibition, B2Bs and company visits as well as tour of the historic sites.
The gender gap report last year ranked Rwanda the first and the sixth on a continental and world level respectively in closing gender disparities in all sectors.


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