IFC, Daltex partner to boost opportunities for Egyptian women in agribusiness
08-05-2018 08:56:15 | by: Bob Koigi | hits: 2624 | Tags:

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, and Daltex, an agribusiness producer in Egypt have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to increase economic opportunities for its women employees and smallholder farmers.

IFC’s advisory team will work with Daltex, which produces fresh fruit and vegetables, to help identify commercially viable, sustainable solutions to increase the share and retention of women workers in select Daltex-owned farms and packaging facilities, and women farmers and smallholders in its value chain.

"The aim is to generate employment and income streams for these women by integrating them in Daltex operations.“Including women and men throughout our operations allows us to tap into a much wider and more diverse pool of resources, whether in terms of our employees, farmers or even business partners that we do business with. This is part of our broader business strategy to grow production, reach new markets and create opportunities for our communities,” said Hesham El Naggar, Daltex CEO.

In Egypt, women represent just over 13 percent of permanent full-time workers and about 18 percent of business owners. Only five percent of Egypt’s firms are led by a female executive and they earn on average about 22 percent less than their male counterparts.

Closing these gaps could help Egypt increase its gross domestic product by over 30 percent.

“Creating economic opportunities for women in key sectors such as agribusiness is one of IFC’s strategic focus areas,” said Sérgio Pimenta, IFC Vice President for the Middle East and Africa. “Investing in women is not only essential for economic growth, but it’s also good for the economy. Companies that attract and retain female employees have a wider and better talent pool.”

IFC’s commitment to advancing gender equality is anchored in a strong business case and in client demand for gender-smart solutions, which has significantly grown over the past several years.

IFC investee companies in the Middle East and North Africa have generated more than 120,000 jobs for women over the past decade. IFC is also investing in banks for on-lending to women-owned SMEs through its Women Entrepreneurs Opportunity Facility.