Recognition for women’s contribution

A JOINT initiative between two private sector organisations will showcase and recognise the invaluable and direct contributions of Pacific women in business.

Launched in conjunction with International Women’s Day 2018, the Pacific Islands Private Sector Organisation (PIPSO) and the Fiji Commerce and Employers Federation (FCEF) have joined efforts profile Pacific women in business and women in executive position throughout the year.

While both share the aim of private sector growth in the Pacific, the initiative is part of both organisations’ recognition towards the invaluable and direct contributions made by Pacific women to the economic and social development of Fiji and the region.

“Typically, women are under-represented in business communities in developing countries,” PIPSO acting CEO Alisi Tuqa said in a statement.

“This is often a result of legal differences in how men and women are treated that hamper women’s opportunities for starting businesses, owning property and land, or accessing credit.

“This is a major obstacle to gender equality.”

Ms Tuqa said they had also been making various efforts to address the issues faced by our Pacific women who are trying to start their own businesses by helping them access relevant trainings such as financial literacy, value chain and cluster trainings as well as participation in tradeshows and conferences to build their business.

Promoting and supporting women entrepreneurship is included as one of the key strategic goals of PIPSO and FCEF recognising the positive benefits to families and communities that women, as business owners, can bring.

FCEF chief executive officer Nezbitt Hazelman said women in business were vital to the growth and sustainability of development in the Pacific.

“FECF understands that the participation of women in the economy can only have a positive domino effect on other development issues such as climate change, resilience and poverty,” he said.

The profiles of Munro Leys lawyer and partner Glenis Yee, Scope Pacific Ltd senior town planner Jacqueline Hughes and Nourish Café owner Kalais Stanley will be shared on the PIPSO and FCEF website and social media platforms.