'NITI Aayog to launch women entrepreneurs' cell next month'
Washington, Feb 21:) Encouraged by an increase in the number of women entrepreneurs in India, NITI Aayog will launch a special cell to provide them a platform where stakeholders can converge to give a boost to their initiatives, a top member of the government's think-tank NITI Aayog has said.
Women entrepreneurs in India are bringing about a lot of development in the public and private sectors, NITI Aayog member Anna Roy told a Washington DC audience yesterday.
More than two dozen Indian women entrepreneurs are currently in the US on a business trip.
The visit is a result of the Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES) co-hosted by India and the US in Hyderabad in November which was also attended by Ivanka Trump, the advisor and daughter of US President Donald Trump.
"What is required is to create awareness, bring visibility to the existing initiatives, bring departments together, enable partner connect, consolidate and leverage from all these efforts," she said.
This is what the women entrepreneurs' cell proposes to do, Roy said at a reception hosted in the honour of a delegation of women entrepreneurs from India by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI).
The dedicated women cell will handhold and facilitate promotion of women entrepreneurs in India, Amitabh Kant, CEO of NITI Aayog (National Institution for Transforming India) had said.
The women delegation will also travel to Boston, Pittsburg and San Francisco.
In Washington, the delegation met officials at the State Department and Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), in addition to interacting with members of the US Chambers of Commerce.
The delegation comprises women entrepreneurs focused on cutting edge areas of India's economic development.
"The GES was a crucial event. It gave a strong impetus to what NITI Aayog was planning and had in the pipeline," said India's Ambassador to the US Navtej Singh Sarna.
"Women have held a very important social, political and economic role in India. And today when you modernise that role and you give it the kind of shape of entrepreneurship and give it the facilitation, I think you're gonna see frankly, a far more focused work than men can do," Sarna said.
Today there is a high level of confidence in the structural and transformational reforms that are taking place in India, he said.
Seema Prem, CEO of FIA Technologies, and a member of the delegation, said that the Indian government has come out with policies that support women entrepreneurs.
"What I have seen is that the government is very, very pro-women. We have seen that in all aspects. I work in the financial inclusion space... what I have seen is that a woman entrepreneur has a lot more leverage and has a lot of acceptance," Prem said.
The cell, to be called Women Entrepreneurial and Innovation Cell of Niti Aayog, will be headed by Niti Aayog advisor Anna Roy, and will offer women financial support through the Rs 10,000 crore Fund of Funds and Mudra micro-loan scheme apart from mentorship in scaling up, Kant told ET on the sidelines of the Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES) in Hyderabad on Thursday.