UN Women hosts its first large-scale exhibition for the sale of products and services made by women entrepreneurs
On 1 and 2 October, the UN Women Georgia Country Office, within the framework of a regional initiative from UN Women Europe and its Central Asia Office, hosted its first large-scale exhibition for the sale of products and services created by women entrepreneurs at the Expo Georgia Exhibition Center in Tbilisi. During the two-day event, around 100 participants from all over the country had the opportunity to present their products to the various attendees, sell them on the spot and to establish important connections with potential customers.
The event was held on the initiative of UN Women, with the involvement of the Georgian Government, certain educational circles, international organizations and the private sector. The exhibition was officially opened by the President of Georgia, Ms. Salome Zourabichvili. She spoke about the importance of women’s involvement in socioeconomic and business spheres, while also focusing on the availability of financial resources and the empowerment of women in the regions, affirming: “I want to tell you that, at any time, in any format, the President and her administration are and will be by your side.”
The participants and guests of the exhibition were moreover addressed by the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Kingdom of Norway to Georgia, Ms. Helene Sand Andresen, and the UN Women Regional Director for Europe and Central Asia, Ms. Alia El-Yassir. “Achieving gender equality is very important because it allows women to contribute more to public life. The empowerment of women is aimed both at their well-being and at the more sustainable, stable development of the country’s economy,” emphasized Ms. Sand Andresen. Ms. El-Yassir subsequently thanked the Government of Georgia, the Government of Norway, and all partners and women entrepreneurs, noting: “Cooperation is the basis of such events. I am glad that we have great partners in Georgia and that together we are trying to create more opportunities and a supportive environment for women to succeed.”
It is significant that the exhibition was in part devoted to conducting motivational and educational sessions, speeches and practical masterclasses for women entrepreneurs. Along with the exhibition and sales area, there was also an entertainment corner for children, as well as food and music spaces, where young female DJs took care of the mood of the guests.
“I am happy to be taking part in this exhibition today,” said the founder of Otanadze Design, Teona Otanadze, who creates handmade, eco-friendly wooden accessories. “I think such large-scale events are very important because they give us women the opportunity to show our abilities and talents.”
The event was supported by the Enterprise Georgia programme, the Georgian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Business and Technology University, TBC Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), working within the framework of a programme supported by the Government of Sweden that aids women entrepreneurs.
The event itself is one part of the Women’s Economic Empowerment component of the UN Women “Good Governance for Gender Equality in Georgia” project, as supported by the Government of Norway.