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50 Million African Women Platform to be up and running in the next six months

East African Community Headquarters, Arusha, 8th August, 2018: A four-day workshop bringing together implementing agencies of the 50 Million African Women Speak (50MWS) project, a software developing firm and representatives of the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the project financiers, is currently underway in Lusaka, Zambia.

The 50MWS Project is being implemented by three different Regional Economic Communities (RECs), namely the East African Community (EAC), the Common Market for Eastern and Southern (COMESA), and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).

COMESA, which is coordinating the 50MWS Project, recently hired Izertis, a Spanish consulting firm to develop the 50MWS platform and the main objective of this workshop is for the implementers to clarify the scope of the platform and provide design inputs to the consulting firm.

The 50MWS Project aims at contributing to the economic empowerment of women through the provision of networking platforms to access information on financial and non-financial services so that they can start, grow or scale up their businesses.

At the opening of the workshop, Ambassador Dr. Kipyego Cheluget, COMESA Assistant Secretary General, assured the AfDB that the 50MWS project will be implemented for the benefits of all women.

Amb. Cheluget said that the different implementing RECs had held consultative meetings with their stakeholders to gather their views on how they want the project to be implemented.

‘’This is an opportunity for us to utilise the feedback from our partners,’’ Ambassador Kipyego said.

“This project comes when RECs are moving towards Digital Economic Integration, towards the full adoption of digital technologies with the objective of establishing seamless processes across the RECs Partner States to enable ease of doing business/trade and to enhance regional integration using ICT as a tool,” Amb. Kipyego added.

Amb. Kipyego urged the participants to volunteer ideas that would assist the consulting firm to create user-friendly platforms that could easily be accessed by women entrepreneurs.

The COMESA official suggested that the ideal platform should have unique features differentiating it from other multiple social media platforms that were already in existence.

Ms. Mary Makoffu, EAC Director of Social Sectors and head of the EAC delegation to the workshop, said in her opening remarks that the project was being implemented at a time when the EAC Partners States were rolling out instruments of Digital Trade to minimize physical barriers to trade in the reion.

Ms. Makoffu said that the 50MWS project would complement ongoing efforts to enhance the EAC economic integration agenda.

David Sabiti, COMESA 50 MWS Coordinator, expressed hope that women entrepreneurs would start using the platform six months after the Lusaka workshop.


For more information please contact:
Achel Bayisenge,
Content Manager for the 50MWS Project
Tel: +255 786726230;
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

About the East African Community Secretariat:

The East African Community (EAC) is a regional intergovernmental organisation of five Partner States, comprising Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda, with its headquarters in Arusha, Tanzania. 

The EAC Secretariat is ISO 9001:2008 Certified

East African Community
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Email: eac@eachq.org