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Women challenge age-old prejudices

Author: Roula Khalaf, Financial Times, Published on: 14 June 2007

Thanks, in part, to the 2002 UN Arab development report…women's rights have been propelled to a higher stage in the media and on to policymakers' agenda…As the FT list in this report shows, Arab businesswomen are still a relatively small club. They come…from privileged backgrounds and many have risen through the ranks in family businesses. But their prominence also reflects a broader trend, in which young, highly-educated women are starting businesses, determined to take advantage of the abundant financial liquidity and slow liberalisation of Middle Eastern economies…A soon-to-be published World Bank study found that women were the principal owners…of 13 per cent of 4,000 companies surveyed in seven Middle East countries…"While women face barriers, they've been much more efficient in the use of people and of their assets," says Nadereh Chamlou, a World Bank senior adviser. "They're creating more productive jobs and being more creative." [refers to Amwal, National Bank of Kuwait]

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