15. Making women strong entrepreneurs
“Women can succeed in business because we are better prepared to tackle difficulties and overcome them. Business coaching gave me the courage to become a successful entrepreneur and expand my business,” explains Sanobar Tojibajeva, an Uzbek textile entrepreneur.
She started her business in 2013 with four employees and sewing machines. The UN Development Programme UNDP provided her with advice and a grant for purchasing sewing machines. Within a few years, she managed to expand her children’s clothing business and recruited 26 workers. In addition to selling products in the domestic market, she also exports 15 000 pieces of clothing each month.
Small and medium-sized companies provide about 77 per cent of all jobs in Uzbekistan. Only 13 per cent of all entrepreneurs in the country are women. Finland is supporting an UNDP project that helps companies to develop their production and to improve the quality and marketing of their products. The emphasis is on supporting women entrepreneurs.
Photo: Adham Kuchkarov, graphics: Juho Hiilivirta