International Women’s Day
Women globally continue to advance their equality and inclusivity in business and trade, and continue to meet the challenges to achieving this goal. The need for this ongoing work is most prevalent in developing countries and economies in transition. Businesswomen and women exporters in these markets face legal, social and political barriers that today continue to maintain a thick glass ceiling to not only career advancement but also to simply getting a decent meal on the table. These challenges include restricted access to finance; access to assistance programs; access to technology that can support innovation and competitiveness in foreign markets; and accessing trade support networks to expand their business.
For over 40 years, TFO Canada has been improving lives through the creation of sustainable trade partnerships for women exporters in developing countries with Canadian and foreign buyers. To help counter these challenges that businesswomen experience, TFO Canada works with partners in developing countries to better understand women exporter’s needs and to support them toward successfully participating in the global economy. TFO Canada’s current five-year project, “Women in Trade for Inclusive and Sustainable Growth”, is designed to address these specific needs and is undertaken with the financial support of the Government of Canada through Global Affairs Canada.
Working in partnership with Trade Support Institutions (TSIs) in 24 developing countries, TFO Canada’s project builds the capacity of TSIs to engage more women in leadership positions and improve women-led exporters’ ability to understand and meet the demand of Canadian and foreign buyers for selected products and services. Through this project, participating developing countries will generate more inclusive economic growth with more equitable exports to Canada and international markets from women-led and men-led small and medium enterprises (SMEs).
TFO Canada is proud to celebrate International Women Day 2021 and, as always, will #ChooseToChallenge the barriers to fair and inclusive economic participation in the developing world. We are pleased to highlight a few of our women exporters’ success stories below: