KATHMANDU, Sept 7: The Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FNCCI) President Shekhar Golchha concluded the 5th International Women Entrepreneurs’ Trade Fair 2078 BS, which was inaugurated by Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba on Wednesday.
Addressing the closing ceremony of the virtual fair on Monday, President Golchha, who was also the chief guest, said that the exhibition aimed at uplifting the economy, which has been hit hard by the pandemic, would further help in capacity building of women entrepreneurs.
"Despite various problems faced by small and medium enterprises due to the pandemic, the Federation of Women Entrepreneurs Associations of Nepal (FWEAN) has set a perfect example on how to keep the economy afloat," he said. “This trade fair has not only developed the economic potential of women, but also set an example of how women can drive economic activity.”
Similarly, FWEAN President Reeta Simha said that the federation has succeeded in continuing the development of women entrepreneurship as the umbrella organization of women's associations across the country. Stating that the fair is a new endeavor in the context of present day Nepal, she said that more than one hundred thousand people had visited the fair till Monday.
“The fair has provided ample opportunities for national and international women entrepreneurs to sell their products. Digital marketing of the products, data collection through e-portals and easy sales distribution have also been emphasized in the fair,” she said.
FWEAN First Vice President Niru Rayamajhi said that 82 stalls from all over the country were participating in the exhibition. Stating that the exhibition got good response from home and abroad, she assured that the products produced by women entrepreneurs will help in expanding the internal market and promoting export trade through online marketing.
Likewise, Second Vice President of FWEAN Shova Gyawali said that the fair has succeeded in lobbying, advocacy, network expansion, information flow, capacity building and marketing for the transformation of women's economic and social empowerment. “The federation not only developed the fair as a modern platform but also addressed the needs and challenges of women entrepreneurs due to the difficulties seen in the market expansion and access,” she said. “The entrepreneurs have developed the morale of the industrialists including marketing and management of their products as the ordinary public is also attracted towards the digital market due to COVID-19 crisis.”
FWEAN General Secretary Sunita Bandya Shrestha infomed that women's associations from 24 districts including Kathmandu participated in the fair. Stating that emphasis has been laid on the delivery as per the demand of the goods, she said that the recent work of the federation has provided a new opportunity to the women entrepreneurs.
The fair was supported by various organizations such as International Labor Organization, FCA, the Asia Foundation, the UKAID, Visa Foundation, and Women’s Bank with the technical support of Dolpha Solutions. The fair was sponsored by National Life Insurance, Jyoti Vikas Bank, Sanima Bank, Nepal College of Travel and Tourism Management, Srinagar Agro, Global IME Bank, Laxmi Intercontinental, Citizen Bank, Nimbus, Pashupati Food Industries and the Embassy of Bangladesh in Kathmandu.
The fair showcased 80 stalls including stalls of handicraft products, items made from natural fiber, Dhaka and handmade paper products, wooden products, organic foods, jewelry and decorative products, among other things. These included stalls belonging to 57 women entrepreneurs, representing 30 district women entrepreneurs’ associations.
The products of women entrepreneurs were also promoted through social media such as Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and email. Delivery service was provided to the cities in Banepa, Panauti and Dhulikhel of Kavrepalanchok district and three districts in Kathmandu Valley. At the fair, 1,130 items produced by women entrepreneurs were put into four groups, namely handicrafts, agriculture and food, trade and services.
This online virtual trade fair held for the first time in Nepal has created an environment for women entrepreneurs to promote their products and build a proper network with customers as well as other entrepreneurs.