Malaysia, ITC and Commonwealth Secretariat to host dialogue on women in the digital economy and trade

Kuala Lumpur event to launch work on ITC’s SheTrades Outlook and the Commonwealth Connectivity Agenda

(Kuala Lumpur/Geneva) – The International Trade Centre (ITC) and the Commonwealth Secretariat have partnered with the Government of Malaysia to host a public-private dialogue on ‘Women in the Digital Economy and International Trade’. The event will take place at the Park Royal Hotel in Kuala Lumpur on 29-30 January 2019.Members of the media are invited to attend the opening of the two-day event, which will gather some 500 representatives from the private and public sectors to explore issues related to trade and gender.Dr. Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, Deputy Prime Minister of Malaysia and Minister of Women, Family and Community Development will deliver the keynote address at opening event. Other notable speakers include Mr. Datuk Ignatius Darell Leiking, Malaysia’s Minister of International Trade and Industry, Ms Vicki Treadell, British High Commissioner to Malaysia, Ms. Sharimahton Mat Saleh, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, MATRADE, Vanessa Erogbogbo, ITC’s Chief of Sustainable and Inclusive Value Chains, and Paulo Kautoke, Senior Director of Trade, Oceans and Natural Resources at the Commonwealth Secretariat.

Attendees will have the opportunity to learn about the design and functionalities of the SheTrades Outlook, a key output of SheTrades in the Commonwealth, a project of ITC’s global SheTrades Initiative.

Based on the seven pillars of the SheTrades Initiative, the SheTrades Outlook aims to provide an invaluable tool for users to assess, monitor, and improve the extent to which the institutional ecosystem supports women’s participation in international trade. It will do so by supporting evidence-based policy-making through the collection and analysis of data, identifying gaps, and enabling dialogues and consensus on high-impact policy measures.

Taking into account different dimensions, contexts, and geographies, the SheTrades Outlook will create an innovative digital tool for Commonwealth governments, trade and investment support institutions, development partners, lead firms and women’s business associations to pinpoint actionable items and benefit from evidence-based policy change.

Funded by the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID), the SheTrades in the Commonwealth project was initiated in April 2018 and aims to deliver training, strengthening, and mentoring activities to 3,000 women-owned businesses in Bangladesh, Ghana, Kenya, and Nigeria as well as provide Commonwealth-wide support to governments through advisory services and tools to encourage more gender-responsive trade and trade-related policies.

The event will also see the launch of work of the Commonwealth Connectivity Agenda, which was adopted at the 2018 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting.

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