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Women entrepreneurs in Mongolia are set to play a bigger role in the country’s economic growth and efforts to diversify trade, with the opening of the International Trade Centre’s (ITC) SheTrades Hub in the country. This transition comes to fruition with the inauguration of the International Trade Centre’s (ITC) SheTrades Hub in the country.

The SheTrades Mongolia Hub made its grand debut on the 28th of June, within the esteemed setting of the World Export Development Forum (WEDF) 2023, hosted in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. 

Spearheaded by the Mongolian National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MNCCI), this decentralised platform represents a pivotal component of the ITC’s renowned women and trade initiative, the SheTrades Programme. Joining forces with thirteen other hubs scattered across Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, and Latin America, the Mongolia Hub embarks on a shared mission to empower and uplift women entrepreneurs.

Within this transformative Hub, women-led enterprises in Mongolia will gain access to capacity-building programmes and market entry opportunities meticulously curated by the ITC. Moreover, the ITC will diligently provide invaluable institutional strengthening and gender mainstreaming services to reinforce the Hub’s specialised offerings tailored for women.

Pamela Coke-Hamilton, ITC Executive Director said “Mongolian women are highly educated and own more than two-thirds of small businesses in the country, but they’re constrained by challenges related to ownership rights, financing and equal pay.”

“With the opening of the SheTrades Mongolia Hub, we look forward to building on our global network of public and private sector partners, so Mongolian women can play a stronger role in international trade .”

Duuren Tumenjargal, the CEO of MNCCI said, “The SheTrades Hub Mongolia is a testament to our collective commitment to empowering women and fostering their active participation in foreign trade within the region, ultimately paving the way for sustainable economic growth and prosperity in the future.”

In addition, the launch event of the SheTrades Mongolia Hub saw remarks delivered by Mongolia’s Minister for Labour and Social Protection, H.E. Bulgantuya Khurelbaatar; Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations, and Amina J. Mohammed, followed by the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between ITC and MNCCI.

A high-level panel session on ‘Women in Trade – Connecting Communities, Opening Doors’ was moderated by Head of the ITC SheTrades Initiative, Judith Fessehaie, after the signing ceremony. Panellists included Baigali Ochkhuu, Vice-President of MNCCI; Xoliswa Daku, Chairperson of the Board of Directors of the Small Enterprise Development Agency (the host institution of the SheTrades South Africa Hub); Thérèse Sekamana, Chief Executive Officer and Founder of LED Solutions & Green Energy, as well as Chairperson of the Private Sector Federation Specialized Cluster, Rwanda (host institution of the SheTrades Rwanda Hub); Elaine Conkievich, the United Nations Development Programme’s Resident Representative in Mongolia; and Opeyemi Abebe, Head of Trade Competitiveness at the Commonwealth Secretariat.

Themed “Diversify with Green Trade” for its 20th edition, WEDF 2023 saw high-level discussions centred on landlocked developing countries, access to finance, green and digital trade, as well as a youth pitch competition. The four-day event also featured business-to-business meetings for companies operating in the information and communications technology, natural fibres and leather sectors.