SheTrades Outlook Policy Tool |13 August 2019
Towards improving support for women in trade, business
What kind of mechanisms do business and trade development institutions have in place to support women in business and trade and how are these monitored and assessed for improvement and better outcomes?
All these and many other related issues like best practices on policies and programmes to support women in trade, domestic policy frameworks on women in trade and potential areas for policy reform are being discussed this week with concerned stakeholder institutions.
Yesterday, a workshop was organised at Avani Hotel Barbarons to introduce the SheTrades Outlook Policy Tool and during the course of this week meetings are being held in different institutions and they will fill a questionnaire assessing their women empowerment, support, monitoring and follow-up mechanism in place.
Enterprise Seychelles Agency (Esa) in collaboration with the International Trade Centre (ITC) and the Ministry of Finance, Trade, Investment and Economic Planning have organised the discussions and training sessions.
SheTrades Outlook (STO) is an innovative policy tool on trade and women’s economic empowerment to help stakeholders assess, monitor, and improve how the institutional system supports women’s involvement in international trade. It aims to increase economic growth and job creation in Commonwealth countries by enabling the increased involvement of women-owned businesses in international trade.
It is an initiative of the ITC a joint agency of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and the United Nations. It is the only development agency that is fully dedicated to supporting the internationalisation of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
Two consultants of the Geneva-based organisation are in the country for the working mission.
Mondher Mimouni, chief trade and market intelligence consultant, is leading the mission. Speaking to the press at yesterday’s workshop he explained that the SheTrades Outlook is a programme to assess the level of women empowerment of a country. This is done by reviewing the different policies in place to see if they are relevant or not, if they are making a real impact and where they are lacking.
“The idea is to really have a benchmark to compare with other countries, to have real Key Performance Indicators (KPI) to assess the present situation as well as what will be done for the future in order to see results, know what and where you are doing well,” Mr Mimouni stated.
He added that the idea is to have economic empowerment in general with more emphasis on women but he further stressed that you cannot empower without the relevant education, knowledge and the right skills.
“The session today is really to meet with different institutions to share information, to see what gender empowerment mechanisms they have in place, what area is covered by which institution, discuss the related financial aspects and possible collaboration between them among other related matters,” Mr Mimouni pointed out.