BIAWE Project is an initiative that intends to support women entrepreneurs in Africa, particular in the COMESA region. Its ultimate aim is to establish regional business incubator and provide business incubation services to women entrepreneurs in three sectors: agro-processing, handicrafts and ICTs.This project was conceptualized following numerous studies and field experiences that have shown varying degrees of challenges encountered by women in their entrepreneurial operations. It has also been perceived as a crucial instrument to address these challenges faced by women entrepreneurs in both formal and informal business activities.
BIAWE Project will be piloted in 8 countries, including Malawi, under the NEPAD Spanish Fund. Adapting COMESA Programme Approach, the project will be implemented in close collaboration with COMESA Cluster Development Programme.
Main activities are as follows:
- Incubation support (i.e. facilitate procurement of processing or manufacturing equipment/machinery for training purposes)
- Establishment of Incubator Houses/ Trade Hubs
- Provision of onsite processing and manufacturing methods
- Technical and business skills training for women entrepreneurs
- Facilitation of access to finance (Credit Guarantee Scheme in collaboration with PTA Bank; Economic Empowerment Fund)
- Policy review concerning women entrepreneurs