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Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Cambodia, UN hold forum to promote women's entrepreneurship

Phnom Penh, June 6 (Xinhua-ANI): Cambodia's ministry of women' s affairs and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) on Wednesday jointly organized a forum on women's entrepreneurship promotion to discuss challenges women are facing in business management.

The one-day forum was attended by some 80 high-level government representatives, international experts, leaders of women's business associations, women's producers groups, entrepreneurs and economic experts, Ing Kantha Phavi, minister of women's affairs, said in her opening address.

 "The event is aimed at creating a platform of exchange and a network among the key players in the government of Cambodia, development partners, and private sector to identify the specific challenges that women entrepreneurs usually experience and explore some of the good practices on how to overcome these constraints," she said.

 In Cambodia, more than 60 percent of micro, small- and medium- sized enterprises are owned by women, but those enterprises are very small and informal ones with only a few employees, she said, adding that those women business owners still face a different kind of challenges compared to their male fellow-entrepreneurs.

Those challenges include limited access to adequate skills training, land ownership, access to advanced education, more importantly access to markets, business information or financial resources, she added. "I believe that the forum will identify some of the key priorities for improving the economic status of Cambodian women," said the minister.

The UNDP deputy country director Sophie Baranes said at the forum that the economic empowerment of women is a key strategy to promote gender equality and poverty reduction in Cambodia and it is clearly articulated in specific targets under the Cambodian Millennium Development Goal 3 to be achieved by 2015. (Xinhua-ANI) .

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