Women’s empowerment key to UAE progress - GulfToday

Women’s empowerment key to UAE progress


Picture used for illustrative purpose only.

Inayat-ur-Rahman, Deputy Business Editor

The UAE has made significant progress in its mission to empower women in the workforce across various sectors and the nation’s women can today be classified as role models for the rest of the world.  

Today, the entire world is celebrating the annual International Women’s Day (IWD).

Sheikha Hind Bint Majid Al Qasimi.

Congratulating women on International Women’s Day 2021, Sheikha Hind Bint Majid Al Qasimi, Chairperson of Sharjah Business Women Council (SBWC), highlighted their strong presence across sectors in Sharjah and the UAE.

She emphasised that these achievements are a culmination of the nation’s inclusive, human-centric approach to development, which views women and men as equal participants in society and economy.

 “The process of women’s social and economic empowerment is the outcome of a conscious choice they make to face and overcome every challenge along the way. Their achievements along the way are proof that every challenge is in fact an opportunity to acquire new expertise, and boost our creativity and innovation. Through their successes, these women have also reiterated the significance of lifelong learning in tandem with a changing market landscape, and stand tall as examples of the triumph that institutions and society can enjoy by partnering to ensure women’s quality contributions in all areas of life,” she added.

Sheikha Hind stressed that SBWC continues to committedly support businesswomen, help them launch their businesses and take them to the next level, and assist them with expanding their network and gaining better access to markets. These efforts, she noted, align with the Council’s vision to position Sharjah as a leading enterpreneurial hub in the region, especially for women.

Reem BinKaram.

Reem BinKaram, Director, NAMA Women Advancement Establishment, said:  “As I congratulate all exemplary women achievers in the UAE, Arab region and the world, I would like the International Women’s Day (IWD) to be looked at as a fresh opportunity to explore new pathways to achieve greater socioeconomic empowerment for women. This year’s IWD campaign theme, #ChooseToChallenge, is a global call to coalesce efforts for the complete removal of barriers that hinder women from contributing fully to society and economy as a way of enabling comprehensive and sustainable development across communities. Women’s full economic participation has the potential to add $12 trillion to the global GDP by 2025, according to a recent McKinsey Global Institute study.”

Focusing on the strategic efforts required to turn this ambition to reality, BinKaram referenced the NAMA and UN Women collaboration on a recent UAE-wide survey, which was conducted after the outbreak of COVID-19, to assess the impact of the pandemic on women-owned businesses, and identify ways in which the nation’s regulatory and legal environments can be further boosted to ensure that women in entrepreneurship and business are offered a level playing field.

“The survey is an outcome of our joint work on UN Women’s three-year Flagship Programme Initiative (FPI), ‘Stimulating Equal Opportunities for Women Owned Businesses, which seeks to train and upskill 25,000 female entrepreneurs across Africa, UAE, and the region so they can benefit from global value chains,” she added.

“Based on a sample set of over 1,000 women in the UAE, the results of the survey will be used to execute Stimulating Equal Opportunities for Women Owned Businesses in UAE programme. Through this endeavour, NAMA’s goal is to fill existing gaps through the creation and mobilisation targeted programmes that will further integrate women in the UAE’s and global economies,” BinKaram continued.

She concluded by thanking the UAE’s steadfast leadership whose forward-looking vision has enabled Emirati women to contribute as dynamic leaders in the nation’s 50-year journey of progress.

Ms Alisha Moopen

Ms Alisha Moopen, Deputy Managing Director, Aster DM Healthcare, said:  “As we celebrate this year’s International Women’s Day, I would like to express my sincere gratitude and admiration for all women out there who have been nothing less than warriors. Especially, in the past one year, from managing various roles, like being a mother, sister or a daughter to balancing jobs and careers while working from home, we have come a long way where women are no longer simply accepting roles assigned to them but are challenging the status-quo, getting their voices heard and bringing about changes that matter.

Lastly, I would once again like to thank each one of you for the tremendous roles that you fulfill. We are an inspiration for one another and together we all are an integral part of the growth and development of our society.

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