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“Strong women make a strong economy”

On 17 May 2024 Parliamentary State Secretary Dr Brantner received 25 female entrepreneurs from the “Women in Business” group from Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan at the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action (BMWK).

The event was a festive conclusion of the two week-programme that is to foster economic participation between and the leading position of women in Germany and Central Asia. State Secretary Dr Franziska Brantner was pleased to meet so many committed female entrepreneurs from Central Asia and stressed the important role that women increasingly play in the business sector of these countries. She is convinced: “Strong women make a strong economy”.

From left to right: Verena Freynik (GIZ), Monika Stienecker (BMWK), State Secretary Dr Franziska Brantner, Michael Gottbehüt (BMWK) ©BMWK/Andreas Mertens

The female entrepreneurs represent a vast variety of sectors covering the textile, furniture and ceramic industry and agricultural products – all sectors that are also of interest for the German SMEs. Several entrepreneurs reported about concrete cooperation projects with German companies that were created during their stay in Germany.

“Cooperation with German companies will enable me to widen the range of quality products I offer on the Kazakh market. Working together with the porcelain manufacturer Reichenbach GmbH will have a positive effect on the economy of both our countries,” says Niabelli Aitzhanova, an entrepreneur and owner of Glassway.

Meerim Abdylassova from Kyrgyzstan is the manager of Wool Carpets. The company is a great example for how the programme works in practice: “My cooperation project aims to develop special machines for wool cleaning in cooperation with the technical universities in Berlin, Cologne and Kyrgyzstan, and is of great importance for Kyrgyzstan. There are more than 6 million sheep in the Kyrgyz Republic. Our project supports women who live in mountain regions, it creates new jobs and gives the Kyrgyz women the opportunity to set up their own businesses”, she says.

©BMWK/Andreas Mertens

Promoting female entrepreneurs is crucial for the social and economic development of Central Asian countries. The Partnering in Business with Germany programme aims at providing managers with new knowledge and skills to lead their businesses and give them the opportunity to be in touch with German companies. When Dr Brantner asked the entrepreneurs what they found particularly impressive during their two weeks visit in Germany, there were many different answers: the visitors were particularly impressed by the openness of German entrepreneurs, their willingness to share their experiences from their business life and also the wide range and development of family owned businesses. “Meeting German companies has helped to develop a different perspective on my own business,” says Nargiza Sharapova from Uzbekistan, director of Sifat Tex.

Teaser picture: ©BMWK/Andreas Mertens