Women entrepreneurs have appealed to the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA), the Ghana Standards Authority and the Ghana International Promotion Centre to streamline their operations, most of which were impediments to the growth of their businesses.
They said one had to go through a lot of frustrations before registering her products or getting the approval to do business both on the local and international markets.
Madam Bernice Ansah, the Chief Executive Officer of Bennyville Ventures, said this at a workshop in Accra on Saturday to improve women’s knowledge on exports, enable them to share experiences and create opportunities to enhance their businesses.
The workshop is an initiative of the International Trade Centre’s (ITC) SheTrades of the Commonwealth Project and supported by the African Centre for International Trade and Development (ACINTaD).
More than 150 women from Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria and Bangladesh attended the workshop, which aims, among other things, to create a portal for the women entrepreneurs to facilitate trade.
Eligible companies, which would meet the criteria of the portal project, have up to February 15, 2019, to register. Madam Ansah, who led the discussion at the workshop, said some of the processes were so frustrating that the women felt like giving up on their businesses.
She narrated how her license was seized for nine months by the FDA when she tried to register her products, including a hair pomade. She called for more awareness creation on the activities of the regulatory authorities to help the women work with ease.
Ms Shari-Julianne Hammond, the National Coordinator of SheTrades of the Commonwealth Project, said the initiative was sponsored by the UK Department for International Development and implemented in the four countries.
The two-year programme would select women owned businesses, business support organisations and corporations to benefit from a wide range of opportunities. Ms Hammond said women owned businesses on the portal would be connected to potential buyers, suppliers and investors whilst learning new skills through free e-learning courses, on-site workshops and webinars.
The entrepreneurs would also receive support to attend national, regional and international trade fairs. Ms Tara Nulhase, a Textiles and Apparel Expert of ITC, called on participants to know and understand their prospective customers to produce to suit their taste.
She urged them to consistently produce quality products and deliver on time to win the confidence of their customers. Entrepreneurs in textiles, finance and pomade making, who shared their experiences advised the women to be creative, take time to build their businesses and be resilient.
Ms Roberta Annan of Impact Fund for Africa encouraged the women not to be afraid to make mistakes and never give up when they make them. Mrs Valerie Obaze of R&R Luxury charged them to share their business culture and identity with employees to enable them to help in meeting their targets.