Published on Monday, 15 July 2013 20:31
Written by Roderick L. Abad
WOMAN-ENTREPRENEURS are a vital key to keep the economic development of the country, a US Embassy official said on Monday.
“We believe in the economic empowering of women. When you empower women, you’re empowering not just one woman but empowering the community,” US Embassy Economic Officer Katy Bondy said during the media launch of a seminar for woman-entrepreneurs in Makati City.
With an economy that is currently doing so well, she said that the Philippines needs woman-entrepreneurs to continue moving forward.
The Philippines, to date, is considered a fast-emerging economy in the region, even surpassing that of China, by registering a robust a 7.8-percent growth in gross domestic product in the first quarter of this year.
Noting that the country’s economy exceeded all expectations, Bondy said women should participate in achieving national growth, especially in the economic sector, to keep the momentum growing.
“Women need to be included in economic activities in order for countries to truly experience development and peace,” the US Embassy official said.
Samahan ng mga Pilipina para sa Reporma at Kaunlaran (Spark) President Mel Alonzo noted that countries are economically better than those that do not promote economic participation and entrepreneurial activity among women.
Based on the study, Access to Trade and Growth of Women’s SMEs in Apec Developing Economies, economies in the Asia-Pacific region could grow yearly by an additional $89 billion if the women populace reach its full economic potential.
The same study, which was a project undertaken by The Asia Foundation for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation released in February 2013, revealed that 99.6-percent of all the registered businesses in the country are SMEs.
They account for 32-percent of the gross domestic product and employ 70-percent of the work force.
Another study conducted by the Global Economic Monitor found that 69 percent of nascent businesses in the country are owned by Filipino women, while 66 percent of established businesses are owned by their male counterparts. The study noted family responsibilities as one of the factors that limit women in managing and operating an established business.
“We need to empower more women to do business,” Alonzo said.
She cited the Young Women Entrepreneurs Boot Camp 2013, a three-day seminar to be held from September 23 to 25 in Manila, as a venue for women, who own businesses for at least two years, to boost their participation in the economy.With Jovee Marie N. dela Cruz