Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM) has launched its county-focused drive to increase the participation of women in industry, through its Women in Manufacturing (WIM) programme.
The WIM North Rift Conference and Expo, held in Eldoret, marks the beginning of a nationwide series of events, geared towards increasing women’s participation in the manufacturing sector.
Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS), Ministry of Industrialization, Trade and Enterprise Development, Hon. David Osiany, highlighted that women are the future of the manufacturing sector.
“Our nation’s manufacturing sector is in a state of reinvention, as such empowering women will be critical to the future of the industry. It is without a doubt that women are an emerging market force, and must be fully supported, to actively participate in our country’s development. As government, we remain committed to advancing women economic empowerment, for prosperity. We have developed the National Women Economic Empowerment Strategy which seeks to bring together regional, national and international stakeholders, to sensitize and build capacity amongst women for their economic empowerment.”
Uasin Gishu County Deputy Governor, Hon. Daniel Chemno, noted the importance of an enabling environment in the counties.
“To enjoy the full benefits of devolution, we must support our businesses to grow. This shall develop skills, enable Kenyans to tap into their creativity and fully utilize women in manufacturing’s talent.”
KAM CEO, Ms Phyllis Wakiaga, explained why it is critical to have women actively participate in the manufacturing sector.
“Women are making strides in steering the growth of the global manufacturing sector. As such, any conversations around economic development and increasing our competitiveness, must involve them.”
Ms Wakiaga also called for the creation of a conducive business environment, that drives inclusive economic prosperity, saying, “We urge government to create an enabling environment , by doing away with challenges such as regulatory overreach, the unstable political climate and unfavourable tax policies, which hinder our competitiveness and productivity. As the Women in Manufacturing Programme, we shall continue to provide practical solutions and gain tangible results on challenges hindering the participation of women in industry.”
The next edition of the WIM Conference and Expo shall be held in Nakuru County.