Date: November 19, 2018
Venue: Kabul Serena Hotel
Afghanistan Chamber of Commerce and Industry celebrated International Women Entrepreneurs Day through holding the Bibi Khadija Award Ceremony by financial support of Afghanistan International Bank (AIB) on November 19, 2018 at Kabul Serena Hotel. This was 4th year of “Bibi Khadija Award” celebration which was launched on November 19, 2015 on the occasion of International Women Entrepreneurship Day to recognize and honor successful business women and role models on annual basis. Bibi Khadija Award main categories are 1. Honorary and 2. Competitive.
In this ceremony, Ms. Palwasha Amin, Senior Advisor to the First Lady of the Country, Ms. Noorjahan Mawani, Ambassador of Agha Khan Development Network, Ms. Nargis Nehan, Acting Minster of Mines and Petroleum, Ms. Kamila Sidiqi, Dupety Minister of Commerce and Industry (MoIC), Ms. Nahid Sarabi, Deputy Minister for Policy at Ministry of Finance, Mr. Abdul Qadir Bahman, Secretary General and Founding Member ICC-Afghanistan, Ms. Fazila Azizi, Head of Small and Medium Enterprises at MoIC, Mr. Rahmatullah Quraishi, Executive Director, Women Economic Empowerment Rural Development Program (WEERDP), H.E. Embassador of Turkey and Representatives Indian Embassy, AIB officials and a majority of businesswomen from all over the country attended.
This ceremony started with recitation of Holy Quran by Ms. Maryam Jamiul Ahmadi. Afterwards, Ms. Manizha Wafeq, the President and Co-Founder of AWCCI welcomed all guests to the 4th year of celebrating Bibi Khadija Award ceremony. She stated that it is an honor for all of us to celebrate Bibi Khadija Award for the fourth time to appreciate businesswomen who took risk and ran their businesses successfully in this country.
Ms. Palwasha Amin Congratulated the Awardees and added, “I really appreciate the women who took the risk to lead their own businesses in current situation of Afghanistan and our male dominant society”.
Subsequently, Ms. Kamila Sediqi congratulated AWCCI on their success of celebrates this ceremony and said, “Coordination and cooperation between AWCCI and MoIC is what made celebration of National Women Enterpreneurs Summit and Bibi Khadija Award Ceremony possible. Today was the first day of National Women Entrepreneurs’ Summit and main purpose of this conference was to release the report of a survey done by MoIC in 13 Provinces on women Entrepreneurs’ who successfully managed their businesses”.
Afterwards, five successful Businesswomen who were chosen based on specific criteria by a selection committee composed of the First Lady, of MoIC, AWCCI and AIB in five categories as Competitive Awardees, were announced. The Competitive Awardees were, Ms. Zohal Atmar, in Creation of the highest number of Employment, Ms. Benazir Yakta, in Entering the Male dominated Sector, Ms. Atena Hashemi, in Starting a service business for other businesswomen, Ms. Sima Hashimi from Balkh, in running her business successfully for more than 5 years and Ms. Behnaz Saljoghi form Herat, in Starting an Innovative venture.
Besides, there were eight honorary awardees who were chosen based on their support to the Economic Empowerment of Women in the country. Honorary Awardees were, Dr. Humayon Qayoumi, Acting Minister of Finance and Senior Advisor of the President, Mr. Elham Omar Hotaki, Director General at National Procurement Authority, Ms. Naheed Srabi, Deputy Minister of Finance, Mr. Rahmatullah Quraishi, Women Economic Empowerment Rural Development Program (WEERDP), Ms. Fazila Azizi, Head of Small and Medium Enterprises, and Ms. Roya Hafizi, the President of Sana Production. Also, Department of Economic Cooperation of Ministry of Foreign Affairs which had their continual support to AWCCI and its members was one of the Bibi Khadija Honorary Awardees.
Moreover, based on a survey by the Research Services Project of MoIC on businesswomen in 13 provinces, 13 businesswomen were chosen by this project based on their specific criteria and during Bibi Khadija Award ceremony were awarded as “the Best Businesswomen” by MoIC.
Bibi Khadija Award Ceremony ended by taking a group photo.