THE National Association of Business Women (Nabw) is now under the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (Comesa) through its Lilongwe-based arm called Federation for Business Women Associations in Eastern and Southern Africa (Femcom).
Unveiling the development in Lilongwe, Femcom executive director, Catherine Itchoya, said Femcom’s adopting of Nabw marks the opening up of the wider market for products produced by the women under Nabw.
She explained that it is now a Comesa policy that national associations of business women in the region should become Femcom’s country chapters.
“Some countr i es whose associations are already under Femcom are doing well because they are connected to larger markets and are supported more in things like value chain development,” said Itchoya.
Femcom is expected to construct a complex in Lilongwe which will house its headquarters and other facilities that will help develop women entrepreneurship within the Comesa region.
Nabw chairpeson Towela Jalakasi said the official unveiling of Nabw as part of Femcom was just a formality as the two organisations have already been working together for some time.
“We have been supported by Femcom for sometime already but now we will be working in a formal way and that will help in getting more support and collaboration,” said Jalakasi.
In her remarks, Minister of Women and Gender Patricia Kaliati said Femcom should always work to the advantage of Malawi because it’s headquartered is in Malawi.
“There are naturally a lot of expectations from Malawian women doing businesses under Nabw,” said Kaliati.
Femcom has been involved in development of different clusters like cassava in which women groups are assisted to develop capacity in production and value chain while linking them to markets.