2013 OECD-MENA Women's Business Forum


2 December 2013 - Rabat, Morocco                             

Created in 2009, the OECD-MENA Women’s Business Forum (WBF) has grown to become a network of over 500 representatives from MENA and OECD governments, business and civil society committed to improving policies impacting on women’s entrepreneurship. 


The key missions of the WBF are to:

  Identify what support exists for women entrepreneurs in the region and where gaps lie.

  Improve women’s access to finance and business development services.

  Connect women entrepreneurs, provide role models and improve access to information.


The MENA region is still struggling to regain the levels of growth and investment it achieved before the global financial crisis and the events of 2011. With 25% youth unemployment – reaching up to 60% in some countries -- pressure is higher than ever to generate jobs for the 2.8 million  young men and women entering the market every year. 

Opening up MENA economies to unleash women’s full potential will pay off with higher productivity, increased competitiveness and more inclusive and sustainable growth across the region. Women’s labour force participation in the MENA region is currently the lowest in the world at 24% compared to 62% for OECD countries.



Watch coverage of the event on MAPTV Maroc (in French)



Conclusions English French Arabic

Exploring bank finance for women entrepreneurs in MENA

Analysis of Business Development Service Provision and Incubation for women entrepreneurs in MENA

Entrepreneurs' Guide to Bank and Non-Bank Financing for women entepreneurs in MENA

Gender inequality and entrepreneurship in MENA: A statistical portrait




H.E. Ms. Birgitta Holst Alani, Ambassador, Chair, OECD MENA Women's Business Forum



Ms. Neveen El Tahri, Chairperson and Managing Director, Delta Shield for Investment



Mr. Marcos Bonturi, Director for Global Relations, OECD