KAM bids to tap women players in industrialisation
Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM) has rolled out its county-focused drive bid to increase women participation 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.
Industrialisation, Trade and Enterprise Development Chief Administrative Secretary David Osiany says 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,” said Osiany who opened the three-day expo in Eldoret.
“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, “added the CAS.
He said that the government, we remain committed to advancing women economic empowerment, for prosperity.
Osiany said the government has developed the National Women Economic Empowerment Strategy, which seeks to bring together regional, national and international stakeholders, to sensitise and build capacity amongst women for their economic empowerment.
He cited the huge potential the East African Community manufacturing market has with a population of 187 million.
“There is a huge gap which needs to be filled by our manufacturers. This can only be achieved through partnerships,” said Osiany.
Uasin Gishu Deputy Governor 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 utilise women in manufacturing’s talent,” said Chemno.
KAM Chief Executive Phyllis Wakiaga said it was 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, “said Wakiaga.
She called for the creation of a conducive business environment, that drives inclusive economic prosperity.
“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,” said Wakiaga.
“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,” she added.
Wakiaga said more than 15 million Kenyans are employed by Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).
The next edition of the WIM Conference and Expo will take place in Nakuru County.
KAM is a business member organisation representing value-added companies and associate services.
Its members’ significant contribution to the economy is estimated at a quarter of the country’s GDP.
The association provides an essential link for co-operation, dialogue and understanding with government and other key stakeholders by representing its members’ views and concerns through fact-based policy advocacy.
KAM promotes trade and investment, upholds standards, encourages the formulation, enactment and administration of sound policies to facilitate a competitive business environment.