JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Portia Simpson Miller, says the Government is committed to creating the most enabling environment to foster gender equality in entrepreneurial success.
  • The Prime Minister said that the policies and legislative frameworks are to be put in place to foster the economic sustainability of businesses.
  • Special attention is to be given to those businesses where women have strong leadership roles.

Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Portia Simpson Miller, says the Government is committed to creating the most enabling environment to foster gender equality in entrepreneurial success.

“We believe that one way to achieve this is to implement policies and programmes for the economic viability of family owned and operated micro, small and medium-sized enterprises,” Mrs. Simpson Miller said.

In her address, read by Information Minister, Senator the Hon. Sandrea Falconer, at a three-day Gender Equality Conference, at the Jamaica Conference Centre, in Kingston, on November 19, the Prime Minister said that the policies and legislative frameworks are to be put in place to foster the economic sustainability of businesses.

Special attention is to be given to those businesses where women have strong leadership roles.

“We believe that these will spur more women into forming more businesses and we recognise the strong role of women and their contribution to national development. In the process of wealth creation, we believe in gender inclusiveness,” said the Prime Minister.

She explained that an increase in access to funding, markets and technologies are to be done, to make this a reality.

“We are providing training and certification in entrepreneurship through the HEART Trust/NTA. We must give our women opportunities to create wealth,” Mrs. Simpson Miller emphasised.

“With the continuing rise in female-headed households, we must support the development of more viable family businesses,” she added.

At the conference and workshop, several women made presentations on areas related to drafting business plans, the pros and cons to having a family business and shared testimonials on having a family business.

Chief Executive Officer of the Jamaica Business Development Corporation (JBDC), Valerie Veira, shared with the women in attendance the ethics of business, building a personal brand, looking beyond business failures and seeking funding for starting businesses.

Sponsored by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the Associated Country Women of the World, in partnership with the Jamaica Federation of Women, the conference was aimed at giving awareness to women who wish to go into business, and highlighting the opportunities available to them. It was also geared at teaching them how to maintain and sustain those businesses.

The conference was held under the theme: ‘Gender Equality and Empowerment for Entrepreneurial Development within Small Island Developing States’.