13 July, 2011

Women in Trade Initiative to enhance women participation in Business sector

Sana Jamal

Islamabad – Young generation filled with hope and passion can be a source of great strength for a nation but if their skills meet right kind of learning, they truly become an asset for the country as well as the world. To increase the the participation of Pakistani young women in the international trade sector, US Agency for International Development (USAID) in conjunction with several multinational firms launched the Women in Trade Initiative on Tuesday.

17 young girls from Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, Gujranwala and Gilgit-Baltistan are part of the three-month management internship program that will introduce the fresh university graduates with well-known companies such as TARGET Sourcing Services Pakistan, TEXLYNX, NISHAT Group, and Li and Fung Pakistan.

“By raising the role of women in the international trade sector, we can enable them to contribute not only to Pakistan’s economy, but to the overall development of the country” said Dr. Marilyn Wyatt, wife of US Ambassador Cameron Munter, who was the chief guest at the launching ceremony. Speaking to the young girls, she added that “women are often the backbones of local economies, and women who work tend to make their voices heard, so government becomes more responsive.” She noted that “Pakistan has the sixth largest female population in the world.”

The internees selected for Women in Trade Initiative will gain skills in sourcing and marketing of products, product development and diversification and supply chain management. The Women in Trade initiative will work to set up linkages between international firms and local universities so that more women have opportunities to explore careers in international trade. “As an intern, I feel great to be part of this program. This platform will not only give us a chance to prove our skills but also introduce us in international trade market” said Farrah Farooq, a Marketing graduate while talking to Pakistan Observer.

Young women at the launching ceremony were filled with hopes to work professionally in their respective fields to make Pakistan a prosperous country. Komal Iabal Awan, a fresh graduate from Textile Institute of Pakistan is one of the internees who has been selected for Women in Trade initiative. She is hopeful that “the training will be a great learning experience for fresh graduates as we will learn from a great team of experts and the best part is that every participant will get a chance to work with a separate mentor.” 

Khola Zaman, a Finance and Business student was “excited” to be part of Women in Trade program. “The overall selection period took more than a month but the result is worth it as I have been selected” she said smilingly.

ISLAMABAD - Wife of US Ambassador Cameron Munter,
Dr Marilyn Wyatt  posing for a group photo with the participants.