Press releases

ITC SheTrades, Visa to upskill women in Asia-Pacific with finance skills

13 November 2023
ITC News

(Geneva) – The International Trade Centre (ITC) and Visa partner on a new project to equip women entrepreneurs in the Asia-Pacific with the skills needed to tap opportunities in the digital economy.

Implemented over one year, the project will deliver trainings on business, digital and financial upskilling, and on unlocking market access for women-led businesses in the region. The partnership will also bring Visa’s financial literacy and management tools into the fold of, the ITC SheTrades Initiative’s one-stop-shop for women entrepreneurs across the world to learn, connect and access capacity building and investment opportunities.

Advancing gender equality in the Asia-Pacific could add an estimated $4.5 trillion to the region’s gross domestic product by 2025, according to a 2018 McKinsey report. Realizing this vision requires focused efforts to bolster women’s entrepreneurship development.

Visa’s Vice President of Inclusive Impact and Sustainability for Asia-Pacific, Patsian Low, said: ‘Visa is proud to partner with ITC on its She Trades initiative, which aims to equip women entrepreneurs with essential business, digital and financial skills, while also providing access to our Practical Business Skills and Practical Money Skills learning programmes on By expanding Visa's long-standing partnership with ITC to the Asia-Pacific region for the first time, we are reaffirming our dedication to empower women entrepreneurs in their growth journey and deliver on our purpose to uplift everyone, everywhere by being the best way to pay and be paid.’

ITC Executive Director Pamela Coke-Hamilton said: ‘Visa has been a long-standing and reliable partner of ITC, so it’s great to see our partnership go from strength to strength and from region to region. We look forward to our continued work with Visa to ensure that women entrepreneurs in the Asia-Pacific have the digital and financial skills they need to fully participate in international trade.’

Equipping Filipinas to increase exports

As part of its pilot activities and building upon ITC SheTrades’ existing partnership with the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) in the Philippines through the SheTrades Philippines Hub, the project will host a workshop on export and investment competitiveness targeting 100 Filipino women entrepreneurs. The workshop will be held alongside DTI’s flagship ‘National Exporters’ Week’ taking place from 4-6 December 2023.

‘Through the SheTrades Philippines Hub, we aim to connect more women-owned businesses to international markets. As the National Exporters’ Week 2023 carries the theme “Agile Philippines: Empowering Exporters towards Global Excellence”, this training will enable Filipinas to effectively seize more opportunities in international markets,’ DTI-Export Marketing Bureau Director and SheTrades Philippines Hub Focal Bianca Pearl R. Sykimte said.

In early 2024, the SheTrades and Visa: Asia Pacific project will co-deliver the ‘Accelerating Women's Trade in Asia Pacific’ webinar series for women-led businesses across the region. Delivered in three parts, the webinar series will equip women entrepreneurs, business support organizations and corporate partners with knowledge and skills to use digital finance tools for their business growth.

Notes for the Editor

About the International Trade Centre - The International Trade Centre is the joint agency of the World Trade Organization and the United Nations. ITC assists small and medium-sized enterprises in developing and transition economies to become more competitive in global markets, thereby contributing to sustainable economic development within the frameworks of the Aid-for-Trade agenda and the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.

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About SheTrades - ITC launched the ITC SheTrades Initiative to remove barriers to women's participation in trade by working with governments, the private sector and entrepreneurs to build the business capacities of women and to create a fairer, more sustainable global economy. ITC SheTrades provides women entrepreneurs and producers with access to key knowledge, resources and networks; supports policymakers on inclusive policy reforms; and leverages public and private partnerships to amplify the impact of its work.

Media contact

Susanna Pak
Senior Strategic Communications Officer
International Trade Centre
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