ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: THE PLATFORM by the Center for Global & Strategic Studies (CGSS) and the Uzbekistan Women Association jointly organized a Webinar on, “Opportunities for Pak-Uzbek Business Women” to discuss the entrepreneurship opportunities for women of both Countries.
Ms. Mehreen Gul, Director, CGSS commenced the webinar and stated that Pakistan and Uzbekistan share a common culture and both countries have countless opportunities of business for each other. Women entrepreneurs have immense potential and only need a proper platform.
THE PLATFORM by CGSS is willing to provide this platform for women of both Uzbekistan and Pakistan.
Dr. Shehla Javed Akram, Founder, All Pakistan Women Chamber of Commerce & Industry, shared that in the beginning women were very reluctant to join businesses as there were social constraints and obstacles and to overcome these issues, a separate chamber for business women was initiated.
She further highlighted the flexibility and potential of business opportunities in the pharmaceutical industry and stated that this is one of many sectors in which women of Uzbekistan and Pakistan can cooperate.
Ms. Gulnara Makhmudova, Chairperson of the Business Women Association, Uzbekistan stated that women in Uzbekistan are very active in the business.
She highlighted that they started with 4-5 women and now have more than 16000 women attached with the Women Association.
She commented that despite many opportunities available in Uzbekistan for business there is still a lack of training and awareness when it comes to entrepreneurship, and in this sector, Pakistan can be of great help if we provide trainings and awareness sessions to business women in Uzbekistan.
Ms. Naheed Memon, CEO, Oracle Power PLC & Former Chairperson Sindh Board of Investment, Pakistan gave a comprehensive overview of the industries and sectors where women from Uzbekistan and Pakistan can work together to better utilize the natural resources available in both countries like Cotton.
Furthermore, she stated that industries like textile, fashion, food, and agriculture industry are some of the major areas where women of both countries can effectively contribute.
Ms. Zamira Yunusova, Director of “Sharq liboslari Markazi” in the Ministry of Textile Industry, Uzbekistan expressed her opinion to initiate more cooperation in the textile, garment and fashion field.
She mentioned her interaction with Iqra University, Pakistan and praised the immensely talented women in the textile business.
She advised that more cooperation and exports in these fields can be fruitful for women in Uzbekistan and Pakistan as both Countries have a rich culture and it can easily be showcased through the textile industry.
Ms. Qaisra Sheikh, Coordinator Women Entrepreneur VP Seat & Former President WCCI Lahore, stated that we have a lot of similarities with the business women in Uzbekistan our financial and cultural barriers are also similar in both countries but the beginning of women Entrepreneurship in various sectors is a good way to make business easier for women in both countries.
She suggested the signing of MoU’s with Uzbekistan’s Women Association, arranging more webinars for individual sectors, and initiating a Pak-Uzbek Women Portal.
Ms. Shazia Suleman, CEO & Director, Inter-Global Travels & Tours, Pakistan mentioned that more focus needs to be given to tourism opportunities, as tourism is one of the major pillars in Pakistan and Uzbekistan economies.
The Women Associations can work better when they visit each other and more people to people contact is initiated.
She suggested increased collaborations to promote women entrepreneurship in Uzbekistan and Pakistan especially in the tourism sector.
The webinar was moderated by Ms. Palwasha Nawaz, Project Executive, THE PLATFORM by the CGSS, and was attended by almost 30 participants from Uzbekistan and Pakistan.