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Boost for women’s entrepreneurship in Kosovo

Thematic Area: Education and business
Year/Date: 21/02/2011

Boost for women’s entrepreneurship in Kosovo


Efforts to promote women’s entrepreneurship in Kosovo* got an extra boost with the publication of a set of policy recommendations designed to ensure a better contribution of women to the economy. The publication follows discussions undertaken at an international conference in Pristina last October involving business women, state authorities, civic interest groups and representatives from partner governments.

‘When women progress, countries progress,’ said Melanne Verveer, the US Ambassador for Global Women’s Issues, at the conference in Pristina. Ms Verveer underlined the importance of women’s entrepreneurship to economic growth in the report.

‘With only 6% of business registered to women owners in Kosovo, the challenges are enormous,’ says Mirlinda Kusari Purrini of SHE-ERA, the Kosovar Women’s Business Association which has published the report.

Ms Kusari Purrini supported the ETF in the development of indicators for women’s entrepreneurship in spring last year with fellow experts from the EU pre-accession and Southern Mediterranean regions.

‘It’s no surprise that the recommendations in our report mirror the ETF indicators,’ says Ms Kusari Purrini. ‘There are a number of core issues which need to be addressed to create an enabling environment for women’s entrepreneurship. Gender sensitive policies–economic, employment and education–to start. This needs to be backed up with quality training provision, improved access to start-up finance and strong and supportive networks,’ she continues.

‘We are very pleased that our Kosovar partners see value in the ETF indicators’, says Lida Kita, ETF country manager for Kosovo. ‘And we are keen to see how they can be used by the national stakeholders to really ensure that women are better engaged into the country’s economic drive.’

The ETF indicators for women’s entrepreneurship were elaborated by the ETF and experts from the partner country to promote a better contribution of human capital to enterprise development. The indicators form part of a policy support package for ETF partner countries associated with the Small Business Act for Europe (SBA).

Later this spring, the European Commission, with the ETF, OECD and European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, will undertake an assessment of how each of the EU’s pre-accession countries is accommodating the policy recommendations associated with the SBA.

* Under UNSCR 1244/1999

Photo: Mirlinda Kusari Purrini of the Kosovar Women’s Business Association



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