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City of Banjul
Thursday, February 25, 2021

‘Women’s economic potential untapped’

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Abdoulie Touray was speaking yesterday at a press briefing held at the Sahel Plaza marking the start of this year’s Global Entrepreneurship Week under the double theme, ‘Women in Entrepreneurship’ and ‘Angels Investing.’

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He said: “In many countries around the world, women remain an untapped economic potential and according to the International Labour Organisation, there are 812 million women living in developing countries with the potential to contribute fully to the growth of their economies. There is a direct correlation between the policies in place to support women and the opportunities available for women and women’ success in business. In developing countries, empowering women in entrepreneurship helps reduce poverty in them, their families and their communities. Yet, the recently released Gender Entrepreneurship Development Index found that in nearly three quarters of the 30 countries surveyed, conditions for female entrepreneurship and business growth were unfavourable. This year, the Global Entreprenuership Week is driving a worldwide movement to engage and support female entrepreneurs. The over 150 countries to take part in GEW will be encouraged to organise events and promote women advancement in entrepreneurship. Additionally, a new WED ambassador programme has been created that promote pioneers of female entrepreneurship advocacy.”

Touray, who is an expert in business and entrepreneurship development, said the key to economic progress anywhere in the world lay in unleashing women’s potential.

He continued: “When we looked around, we did realise that the insurance industry has been a pacesetter in terms of promoting the advancement of women in entrepreneurship. We have taken note that out of the 11 insurance companies that are operating in The Gambia, four are headed by women entrepreneurs. These include Great Alliance Insurance Company, International Insurance Company, Royal Insurance Company as well as Takaful Insurance Company. We will be having a programme to indicate that women are indeed trailblazers as far as the insurance business landscape is concerned. As part of the Global Entrepreneurship Week, we will formally announce on Wednesday a dynamic Gambian woman who has been selected to become our women entrepreneurship ambassador. We will also be observing what is referred to as ‘Angel Investors’ which is a terminology that has gathered momentum to promote young entrepreneurs particularly those under the age of 35. For the case of The Gambia, those under the age of 30 are considered to be youth and this will give them the motivation and the inspiration to become entrepreneurs. We want the youth especially those graduating from high schools and the tertiary institutions to move away from the notion of seeking jobs but to become job creators themselves for sustainable development.”

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