Empowering women is a high priority for IORA. On December 10-11, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) hosted an IORA Workshop on Financial Inclusion for Women Entrepreneurs in Abu Dhabi. This workshop brought together the private sector, government civil society and women entrepreneurs from IORA’s 22 Member States and 9 Dialogue Partners.
Women entrepreneurs face many challenges globally. Access to finance is a key challenge, as women face disproportionately high rates of loan rejections and difficulties raising collateral when lacking in assets. The workshop discussed ways to overcome these challenges in the Indian Ocean region, and provided a platform for networking and sharing knowledge among experts and activists working to improve women entrepreneurs’ access to finance.
The UAE is the first Arab country to close the educational attainment gender gap and is a global leader on implementing equal pay for equal work and board quotas for women’s participation. This initiative builds on the successes of IORA’s promotion of women’s economic empowerment in 2018, including the IORA Ministerial Conference on Women’s Economic Empowerment-A Prerequisite for Sustainable Development, and the establishment of a dedicated working group to deliver real results for women in IORA Member States.
Read more about IORA’s work on women’s economic empowerment.