| Deputy PM highly praised the initiative by the VWU, the World Bank and the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women, to take women's economic empowerment in the country as the theme for this year's Viet Nam Women's Innovation Day.—VNA/VNS Photo
HA NOI (VNS)— Five organisations and ten individuals received the 2013 Vietnamese Women Awards for their excellent achievements in all fields of social life in Ha Noi yesterday.
The awardees included those who are working in a wide range of areas across the country including health care, military, business and research.
Speaking at the ceremony, Chairwoman of the Viet Nam Women's Union (VWU) Nguyen Thi Thanh Hoa said that the awards acknowledged the talents and contributions of Vietnamese women to the national development cause in all fields.
This is the elenth year of the award. There have been 41 organisations and 84 individuals who received the awards in the last 11 years.
Also yesterday, Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Thien Nhan praised 270 exemplary Vietnamese women for their achievements and contributions to economic development and poverty reduction in the 2002-13 period.
The 270 honoured, who were selected from grassroots levels on behalf of all Vietnamese women throughout the country, gathered at a conference held by the VWU in the capital city of Ha Noi.
Addressing the conference, the Deputy PM highly praised the initiative by the VWU, the World Bank and the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women, to take women's economic empowerment in the country as the theme for this year's Viet Nam Women's Innovation Day.
"This is a meaningful activity among a series of events for innovation day, happening at a time when the domestic and world economies are facing many difficulties," Nhan said.
"This reflects the special attention of the women union in supporting women and to involve them in economic development, as well as encouraging them to bring more innovation to production and business," he added.
Reports at the conference show that in the last 10 years, women unions at all levels have supportive programmes to help their members, especially the poor and those in rural areas.
According to the VWU's Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Thanh Hoa, by June this year, the unions have supported over 11.7 million poor households by providing them with employment, and also livestock to supplement income, for a total of nearly VND7 trillion (US$333 million).
Furthermore, nearly 18,000 charity houses for the members were newly-built or repaired thanks to the unions for a total of VND291.3 billion ($13.8 million).
The unions at all levels have also organised different support models for women members, including poverty reduction clubs, credit fund groups, co-operatives and micro-financial organisations, Hoa said.
Participants at the conference also shared and exchanged their experiences in doing business.
They expressed their wishes that the Party and the Government would pay more attention to rural areas, as well as have more appropriate policies to create employment, support preferential credit and create measures to promote their products. They also asked for legal consultancy to equip themselves in doing business.
Also yesterday, the VWU, in co-ordination with the Viet Nam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI), organised another forum for women to share experiences in economic development.
VCCI Chairman Vu Tien Loc said at the forum that women should be encouraged to get involved in economic development as a way to promote gender equality and social progress.
Loc said the Party and State have introduced a number of policies to develop the female business community in Viet Nam.
"The forum provides a chance for domestic and foreign agencies to share experience in supporting women and businesswomen in economic development," he said.
The International Labour Organisation (ILO) Country Director Gyorgy Sziraczki said the forum would help raise women's leadership roles in business organisations, promote gender equality and honour businesswomen's initiatives.
A country can eliminate poverty, achieve prosperity and develop sustainably unless women are empowered and fully engaged in economic activity, he said.
UN Women Chief Representative in Viet Nam Shoko Ishikawa said barriers should be removed to encourage women to take part in the labour market by accelerating reform and ensuring the best working conditions and human rights for both women and men.
Participants at the forum discussed two main issues: creating the best possible conditions for businesswomen to develop, and empowering women in production and trading in Viet Nam.
They agreed that to develop their business effectively, businesswomen needed encouragement and promotion in enhancing their ability and being active in seeking and exploring the market as well as harmonising the expenses and technological renovation. — VNS