They raised an eight-point demand
Women entrepreneurs want loans with low interest rates and on easy terms and the condition to ensure environment for women entrepreneurship.
The women entrepreneur on behalf of the Women Entrepreneurs’ Network for Development Association (WEND) has urged the government to take steps to implement an eight-point demand of theirs in the next budget.
WEND organized a press conference at Economic Reporters’ Forum (ERF) in the capital on Saturday.
The Women entrepreneurs highlighted their demands in the press conference.
WEND President Dr Nadia Binte Amin said: “The government has formulated the policy of providing loans at low interest to women entrepreneurs for easy terms but we are not getting this facility. We are unable to get capital from banks due to high interest rates and difficult process.”
She said the demand for VAT has been reduced to zero rates. Women entrepreneurs have small and medium standards enterprises. As a result, VAT is imposed on high rates; they will not be able to stay in the competitive market for it.
In the press conference, the Women Entrepreneurs urged to increase the tax-free income limit to Tk5 lakh from Tk3 lakh. Besides, the women entrepreneurs should be given access of import of raw materials and machinery on duty-free benefits, they demanded.
“Corporate tax rate in our country is so high compared to other places in the world; as result women entrepreneurs are not able to get involved in big businesses,” Dr Nadia added.
The 8-point demands
Provide loans with low interest rate and easy terms; reduce VAT rates; reduce import tariffs; establish a training institute; establish a help desk for women entrepreneurs in every division; increase women representatives to all international fairs and conferences and provide plots in the economic zones for them.
What is WEND about?
WEND is a new network of women entrepreneurs. The organization has obtained government permission and membership of the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI). It is the fourth body that obtained trade license.
"The network will support and promote all of the women entrepreneurs across the country," Dr Nadia said
“It would also provide theoretical and technological support and assistance in getting trade license, E-TIN (E-Taxpayer’s Identification Number) and Value Added Tax (VAT) registration,” she added.
"Women entrepreneurs will also take assistance of the network to develop skill in producing products, getting access to both local and international markets," she further said.
Initially, WEND has started its activities in eight divisions of the country. Some eight women entrepreneurs are monitoring the same number of “one stop crisis centre” one each in each divisions.