COMMONWEALTH GAMES WIN BY DURBAN IS AN OPPORTUNITY FOR COMMONWEALTH WOMEN IN BUSINESS TOO
Glasgow 2014 went further than any other Commonwealth Games and major sporting event in targeting opportunities for women entrepreneurs and business-owners too. Durban’s win can build on this momentum as can the Gold Coast Games in 2018.
Nine months before the Glasgow Commonwealth Games a special session during the CHOGM Business Forum held during the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Colombo co-chaired by the Commonwealth Businesswomen’s Network (CBW) and the Commonwealth Secretariat brought together the Scottish Government with policy-makers, the private sector and businesswomen. The Glasgow Games in 2014 set out its commitment to ‘procurement processes to enable opportunities for broader supply chain engagement…by awarding contracts….to supported businesses, believing involvement of the third sector is crucial to improving social inclusion, along with delivering good value for money….The Glasgow 2014 Organising Committee’s (OC) ….would like to encourage the supply chain to consider adopting a similar approach.’
As the only organisation accredited to and recognised by 53 Governments working on women’s economic empowerment (as the Commonwealth Games Federation is accredited for its work on Commonwealth sport), we congratulate the Commonwealth Games Federation and the city of Durban for winning the bid to host the Commonwealth Games in 2022 and as the first African city to do so.
In this key year for women’s economic empowerment with key meetings at the UN in September and at CHOGM in Malta in November including the first ever Women’s Forum, we reaffirm and renew our commitment to making women’s economic empowerment happen through the 3 Ts of trade, talent and training. Our work with the Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply (CIPS) and UN Development Business (UNDB) in supporting procurement capacity-building and accessing contract awards for women-owned/led/operated businesses are core to our work on trade, especially given that less than 1% of such opportunities are taken up today by women-owned businesses globally.
Farzana Varachia-Patel said, “This is a great day for Durban and also for women in South Africa and beyond especially if we can harness the energy and excitement in abundance here to accelerate progress in women’s economic empowerment.”
Arif Zaman, Executive Director of the Commonwealth Businesswomen’s Network (CBW) in South Africa today said: ‘We warmly congratulate the City of Durban in securing the bid for the Commonwealth Games in 2022. That may seem a long time away but the success of London 2012 and especially Glasgow 2014 show that strong planning, people and processes and also opportunities for women in business through procurement begin now.’
The Commonwealth has a billion women with 60% under 30 with its 53 countries accounting for 20% of world trade where the costs of doing business are 19% less than doing business with non-Commonwealth countries.
Connect – collaborate – and do commerce with and via the Commonwealth.