Private Sector Development Initiative Empowers Pacific Women

by Marie Kauna – EMTV Online, Port Moresby

The Private Sector Development Initiative is a regional technical assistance initiative that was launched in 2006 by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) for the member developing Pacific island nations to empower economic growth and activities.

Co-financed by the Australian Agency for International Development, the initiative was designed to support these member countries and empower privately led sector economic activities into sustainable activities for better economic outcomes.

With its objective and focus on empowering private economic activities, the initiative has now stepped in to help women in the Pacific region, in particular those that are engaged or operating their own businesses.

The focus of this move is to help the struggling female that encounters business challenges, and ways they could assist empower their involvement and participation in their business communities.

Amongst the many challenges that weaken female potential, legal and cultural systems are two identified challenges that tend to prevent female participation and involvement in their business communities and as a result, many see less recognition.

While this has been a battle for many over the years, this issue is slowly coming to see a new chapter, with women’standing out in business in their communities. 

This has come as a result of the initiative and its supported reforms. These reforms include:

  • Technical skills training
  • Employment in State-owned enterprises 
  • Movable assets as collateral and 
  • Review of competition and consumer laws.

Countries that are beneficiaries of these initiative includes Cook Island, Fiji, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Federated States of Nauru, Palau, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Timor-Leste Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu and Papua New Guinea.

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