There is no limit to what Bangladesh can achieve if the full potential of women in the workforce can be unleashed.
In fact, increased participation of women in the economy is absolutely imperative if we are to meet our Sustainable Development Goals for 2030.
Gender equality is one of the key components of the SDGs, and although we have made great strides in empowering women in recent years, there is still a lot of work to be done.
Right now, women, who consist of half the population, contribute about 34% in driving the GDP forward.
Women entrepreneurs consist of about 10% of the total business entrepreneurs -- it is clear that a lot of entrepreneurial potential in the country is just waiting to be set free.
It is this class of women entrepreneurs who will be the drivers of change for the future.
They are making significant contributions to business, export growth, supplies, employment generation, productivity, as well as family and society.
Comprehensive training programs across the country can help give women the skills needed to become self-reliant, and start their own businesses.
We also need to make sure the participation of women in business is not confined mostly to manufacturing, textiles, boutiques, handicrafts, and printing as it is now.
There are contributions to be made across all sectors to the economy, and the participation of women in these sectors must be encouraged and facilitated.
The hallmark of any developed society is true gender equality -- let us make it a priority for Bangladesh to be that kind of society.