CDB to Host Inaugural Symposium for Caribbean Women Entrepreneurs

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The Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) will host women entrepreneurs from the region at its Barbados headquarters on September 26, 2023, as it launches the SheTrades Regional Hub in the Caribbean. SheTrades is a global initiative of the United Nations and World Trade Organization’s (WTO) International Trade Centre (ITC) which seeks to provide support for women-led and women-owned businesses as a means of economic empowerment. At the inaugural meeting, the Bank will commence direct engagement of Caribbean women who lead or own businesses to create avenues for global networking and trade opportunities through SheTrades.

The symposium will explore several critical topics and identify solutions for both online and in-person participants. The agenda includes knowledge sharing by accomplished Caribbean women entrepreneurs, and business support organisations, discussions and recommendations on making women-led and owned businesses become globally competitive, as well as an interrogation of the significant socio-economic impact of women starting or leading export-ready and competitive businesses.

Speaking about the initiative, the Bank’s Acting Head of Private Sector Division, Ms. Lisa Harding, said, “We are excited to operationalise the SheTrades Caribbean Hub! CDB looks forward to facilitating increased access to training, coaching, mentoring, networking, investment, and export opportunities for women-owned MSMEs in the Bank’s 19 Borrowing Member Countries. The SheTrades Symposium is indicative of our commitment to bolster the economic capacity of women entrepreneurs.”

With 14 Hubs across 30 countries, She-Trades operates to champion quality data, enact fair policies, secure government contracts, strike business deals, enable market access, unlock financial services, and grant ownership rights. CDB’s SheTrades Caribbean Hub will advance the Bank’s agenda to ensure inclusive economic growth in its BMCs through increased participation of women-led MSMEs in trade by increasing competitiveness and market access of women-led MSMEs in CDB’s BMCs.

The SheTrades Regional Hub in the Caribbean is a collaborative 2-year programme supported by the ITC being implemented by CDB.

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