Over 60% women Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) entrepreneurs in Bangladesh do not get loans neither from the government nor the private loan providers, says a study of ILO, Bangladesh.
On the other hand, 88% SME women entrepreneurs expressed their dissatisfaction over the cumbersome loan application process that is a great barrier in the way of getting their desired loans, view specialists at ‘Dhaka summit on skill, employment and decent work 2016’ held at a city hotel yesterday.
During his presentation, Francis De Silva, senior specialist of ILO Bangladesh, stated that the average loan size for women-owned SMEs is 47% less than the amount SMEs owned by men, and 36% of women reported gender-bias among financial institutions.
“And to get loan, women needed nearly 13 time visits to the bank to get their loan approved,” he further added.
According to the ILO survey, nearly 70% of the women entrepreneurs in Bangladesh are in micro and rural enterprises and overall demand for finance among women-owned SMEs is estimated to be approximately Tk9,975 crore.
As an initiative to promote women entrepreneurship, the Ministry of Women and Children Affairs jointly with a2i, SME foundation and Bangladesh Women in Technology (BWIT) have fixed a target to develop 3,000 women as ICT entrepreneurs and freelancers from the remotest and under-privileged areas across the country.
10 million migrant workers stayed abroad till November, 2016 and sent remittance worth US$12.49 billion, said Anir Chowdhury, a policy advisor of the Prime Minister Office.
He said: “Apprenticeship is less costly to recruit than adult and experience workers and condition of Bangladesh is yet to be a satisfactory one compare to the developed and developing countries in giving access to the industries.”
“Apprenticeship helps improve companies’ productivity and people who have trained as apprentice are likely to stay with that company, skilling people in target areas meet business need and help employers to overcome structural barriers which will ultimately be beneficial for the industries,” he reads.
Under ‘Apprenticeship programme in informal sectors for unemployed youths’ a2i (is a key driver from PM office to operate skill development programmes) in partnership with ILO has started skill development in 600 informal industries and workshops in 30 Upazillas and 1200 unemployed youths were receiving training, says the ILO study.