Rwandan Private Sector Committed to Mainstream Gender in its Activities

On December 19, 2012 Gender Monitoring Office (GMO) held a consultative meeting with Private Sector Federation high Officials and its Representatives from all Districts in Gorillas Golf Hotel in Kigali City. The meeting aimed at sharing views on how to mainstream gender in services and activities of private sector.

In his opening remarks, Mr. Ramadhan Barengayabo, the Deputy Chief Gender Monitor in charge of gender mainstreaming, thanked all participants to have accepted the invitation to the consultative meeting on gender mainstreaming in Private SectorHe told them that sustainable and equitable development cannot be reached without the contribution of both men and women. He indicated that gender mainstreaming deserves a particular attention in private sector because the latter is an important partner and main catalyst in economic development of Rwanda.

The Deputy Chief gender Monitor, continued by saying that though there is a progress made in the respect of gender principles, the Private sector is still a male dominated domain. He for instance indicated that there are still gender gaps in private sector such as low participation of women's in formal business and investment, poor women’s representation among industries’ owners, limited access for women to credits to invest in business, unequal access to employment between men and women by employers who fear recruiting women because of their biological make-up, etc. He showed that these gender gaps in private sector cannot be filled without strong partnership between various stakeholders such as MIGEPROF, GMO, PSF, and international partners working on gender. He concluded his word thanking the good will and commitment of private sector to mainstream gender in services and activities.

The representative of PSF, Madame Kamarade Imm, indicated that Private Sector is truly dominated by men because of challenges and constraints faced by Rwandan women. Madam Kamarade Imm showed that limited access to finance, lack of business managerial skills, lack of technical skills to add – value to fetch better and competitive prices and lack of business information are among others challenges that prevent women from playing a visible role in private sector. She therefore added that to address these issues, Rwanda Chamber for women entrepreneurs mobilizes funds to build capacity of women in business women. 

The consultative meeting with PSF formulated recommendations to help the private sector engender its activities. Some of formulated recommendations include the following: support supply chain & marketing practices that empower women, mainstream gender in all services and activities of private sector, provide capacity building on gender for members of PSF, promote women owned enterprises and SMEs development, collect and use gender disaggregated data, etc.

During the meeting, Gender monitoring Office and Private Sector Federation were committed to build strong partnership in order to promote gender equality in services and activities of the Private sector.