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General News Wed, 7 Apr 1999

US trade mission meets women's groups

Accra (Greater Accra) 7 April '99

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Africa Trade and Friendship Mission, a US-based body aimed at promoting trade and cultural exchange between the Bay Area in the US and Sub-Saharan Africa, on Wednesday interacted with their Ghanaian counterparts in Accra. The group led by Ms Barbara Lee, a Congresswoman, is in the country to explore business opportunities. Women's groups represented at the meeting included National Council on Women and Development (NCWD), 31st December Women's Movement, Association of Professional Business Women, Ghana Association of Women Entrepreneurs and National Board for Small Scale Industries. Ms Nova Sayers, Business Development Manager of the Greater Oakland International Trade Centre, who stood in for Ms Lee, said the visit is a follow-up to President Bill Clinton's visit to Africa early last year. It is also to gather information about Ghanaian women in business to be shared with members of the mission abroad. Mrs Marian A. Tackie, Acting Executive Director of NCWD, said the paramount aim of the council is to improve the status of women and ensure gender balance. She said they are successfully doing this in conjunction with other women's groups through seminars and other educational programmes. Representatives of women's groups at the meeting said the Ghanaian woman lacks human capacity building and co-ordination in politics, health and raising of capital. They urged their foreign counterparts to assist them to set up "a very simple bank that would give credit facilities to women without necessarily emphasising collateral." Members of the mission presented three laptop computers to the council to enhance activities of the women.

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