UNDP Kuwait aids the launch of The Women's Economic Empowerment Incubator
The economic past experience of industrial countries, has shown that the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) play a vital role in the economic development of all industrial countries, through their perceived role in transferring innovative ideas into reality.
It is important to note that the economic system of Kuwait, being capitalism, is based on two important pillars. First is an advanced banking system, and second, a credible framework of SMEs support. As the Kuwaiti banking system enjoys an advanced level of professionalism, praiseworthy SMEs support system is rather lagging as, until this moment, no SME-related law has been approved, as is the case in most countries in the world.
Nevertheless, Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor (MOSAL), with a vital assistance from the United Nations Development Program (UNDP Kuwait), has established the 1st distinctive business incubator that is specialized for Kuwaiti women, as part of a development program, Women Economic Empowerment project (WEE project). The project aims to strengthen the institutional capacity of MOSAL in order to provide superior economic assistance to Kuwaiti women in terms of launching several business incubators for Kuwait women.
After several building capacity activities, MOSAL was able to launch the 1st incubator in the commercial zone at Alsalam residential area in South Surra. The choice of this area was intended due to its high intensity of population, a factor that is critical in making this endeavor a successful and encouraging experience.
The incubator was given a commercial name as “33 Boutiques”. It hosts 36 projects and about 10 other projects in terms of continuous exhibitions throughout the year and during different local distinct social occasions. The incubator is supposed to provide professional technical, legal, financial, secretarial, and logistical services to the incubatees, who have diverse projects that range from women-specialty projects to a wide-range projects such as computer-and-media- related projects. The incubator also will indulge into some virtual incubation activities to entrepreneurs affiliated with “Own-Efforts” project, another ambitious project run by MOSAL to a special group of Kuwaiti women, who have some prominent business ideas.
MOSAL has assigned a steering committee from its high-command employees as a sign in stressing its seriousness towards this project. The committee shall take this project forward, until several other incubators are kicked off in the future. It is a hope that the consequence of opening several incubators will be a stunning inspiration and eye-catching to many officials in Kuwait. This, most likely, would spark the plug to a further awareness of the SMEs role in Kuwait economy.