Jakarta (ANTARA) - Cooperatives and Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) Minister Teten Masduki stated that women-run MSMEs are strategic drivers in the national economic development since they dominate MSMEs in Indonesia.

Masduki made the statement through a written remark conveyed by the assistant of the ministry's Deputy for Business Consultation and Assistance, Destry Anna Sari, at the Women 20 (W20) Indonesia MSME expo in Bandung, West Java, according to a written statement here on Monday.

W20 is one of the G20 engagement groups focused on discussing and promoting women's empowerment and gender equality.

"The great dominance of women, as MSME players, and the great enthusiasm of women to gather in cooperatives show that women can be equal to men to participate in advancing the nation's and state's economy," the minister remarked.

He lauded the W20 Committee and six university alumni associations, specifically from Padjadjaran University, Parahyangan University, Bandung Institute of Technology, Bogor Agricultural University, Indonesian Education University, and the University of Indonesia that have held the W20 Indonesia MSME Expo, with 200 participating MSMEs.

According to Masduki, W20 and telco company Sisternet XL Axiata have synergized with the Ministry of Women's Empowerment and Child Protection to implement a business incubation program in a bid to improve the capacity of women entrepreneurs regarding entrepreneurship with a gender perspective, business scaling, marketing and branding, financial literacy, and digital marketing.

The W20 Sispreneur program, a collaboration between W20 and Sisternet XL Axiata, is considered to provide an understanding of gender equality perspectives, digital literacy improvement programs, business assistance from global experts, providing access to capital, and opening up opportunities to expand the business to the global level.

According to the minister, nearly 80 percent of the W20 Sispreneur program's participants have managed to enter digital platforms.

Currently, according to Indonesia E-Commerce Association (idEA), the number of MSMEs that have entered digital platforms as of August 2022 reached 20.24 million. According to data of the Ministry of Cooperatives and SMEs, out of the 30 million MSMEs targeted to enter the digital ecosystem by 2024, the achievement has, so far, reached 67.4 percent.

"Not only to go onboard, but MSMEs also need to be assisted in improving their capacity and reaching the bigger market," he remarked.

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Translator: M Baqir, Raka Adji
Editor: Sri Haryati
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