Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) honored a number of women on 6 March 2010 for their work in the field of enterprise development in Viet Nam. Mr Vu Tien Loc, President of the VCCI, awarded medals “for the business development” to exceptional women entrepreneurs and to three distinguished individuals who have played a key role in business development in Viet Nam and are therefore helping to make Viet Nam one of the world’s fastest growing economies.
Ms Rie Vejs-Kjeldgaard, Country Director of the International Labour Organization Viet Nam, was awarded the Medal for Enterprise Development to acknowledge her personal commitment and ILO’s contributions to development through business in Viet Nam.
The ILO is actively involved in promoting small enterprise development as a means of job creation and poverty reduction in Viet Nam, and has built a strong track record of assisting women entrepreneurs—with the vital support of the One UN Fund, Irish Aid, SIDA, the Spanish MDG Fund, and Cordaid among others. It has introduced a number of gender equality tools, including the training package on GET Ahead for Women in Enterprise, and provides entrepreneurship development training for many women and community leaders.
The ILO is currently undertaking a number of activities that are impacting the working lives of Vietnamese women entrepreneurs: the WEDGE project, promoting women’s entrepreneurship development works closely with the VCCI’s Vietnam Women Entrepreneur Council to help government agencies, partner organizations and business development service providers improve their services for women entrepreneurs; a project with four other UN agencies on ‘Green’ production aiming to create the environment for grassroots handicrafts producers—largely rural women—to grow and gain access to more profitable markets; and a local economic development project in Quang Nam province—an area acutely affected by youth unemployment—is working to improve the opportunities of young women and men. More broadly, a network of master trainers using the Start and Improve Your Business training tool continues to expand and assist business and entrepreneurship development. A programme on microfinance works to strengthen institutions to provide better access to credit for vulnerable groups.