Connecting Women Entrepreneurs in Egypt to Global Markets – SheTrades


Workshop Speakers

Number of participants

Workshop Date

Workshop outcome

SheTrades Egypt will support Egyptian women-owned small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the handicraft sector to integrate into domestic and global value chains and access new markets by assisting SMEs to deliver products in accordance with market requirements, improving the capacities of trade support institutions (TSIs) to provide quality business support services to women owned SMEs, and linking SMEs to new markets.

Egypt has a rich historical, social and cultural heritage that is reflected in its strong Handicrafts legacy. Yet, the Handicrafts sector is fragmented, informal and geographically scattered across the country. Women play a large role in Handicrafts manufacturing. Women also produce pottery and ceramics, are engaged in carpet weaving and basketry as well as candle and soap making.

However, since income from Handicrafts alone has become insufficient for most crafts households, women’s work in crafts usually serves to complement household income, while men pursue more lucrative jobs.

The project will enhance SME capacities through trainings, including with regard to production, packaging, logistics, trade information, quality management, and sector-specific marketing and sales. The SMEs will then be connected to new markets in order to ensure that the improvements result in business generation.

The project will also improve the provision of women-owned SMEs specific services in order to fill the gaps resulting from the fragmented Egyptian institutional landscape. To this end, support will be provided to the Export Development Authority of Egypt on trade information services, market development and quality management.

Objectives of the Event

The International Trade Centre, The Ministry of Trade and Industry, Ministry of Planning & Economic Development and the Export Development Authority are organising, with support from the Islamic Development Bank and the International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation (ITFC), a Project launch event in order to present the SheTrades initiative, its objectives and benefits and to hold a high-level consultation discussing solutions for how women-owned businesses can overcome challenges to trade.

In addition, the event will highlight the results of the Diagnostic study done by Industrial Modernization Center of the fifty women SMEs selected as beneficiaries of SheTrades Egypt project.
During the consultation, policymakers, the business community and representatives of Women Business Organizations will convene to highlight ways in which their organisations can adopt practical interventions to support the participation of women in trade.