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SEWA Trade Facilitation Centre

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Presentation on theme: "SEWA Trade Facilitation Centre"— Presentation transcript:

1 SEWA Trade Facilitation Centre
CSO Forum: World Bank Annual General Meeting 15th September 2006 SEWA Trade Facilitation Centre Empowering women through traditional skills

2 The Self Employed Women’s Association (SEWA) “We Are Poor But So Many”
Today, over 700,000 SEWA members both contribute and gain: Empowerment Livelihood Support Direct Employment Micro-finance Health Care Child Care Nutrition Education SEWA established in 1972 in India, India;s largest national union of poor self employed women workers from the infromal sector with a membership base of women workers in 7 states of India. Majority of the workers are from rural areas.

3 Evolution of SEWA: Need Driven and
Demand Based Growth Founded 1972 as labor union for informal sector Rural Expansion 2001 Earthquake SEWA Bank Founded

4 SEWA’s Organizational Structure
Over the past three decades SEWA has built its own economic institutions that directly link up with the economic mainstream markets. Today SEWA has more than groups, which have been federated in to 9 local economic federations. SEWA has set up organisations like STFC, SGMH and GTN to facilitate market access for tis producer members.

5 The Self Employed Women’s Association (SEWA)
SEWA’S Goals Self Reliance Full Employment From 1200 in 1972 to members in 2004 spread in 14 districts of Gujarat and 7 states of India From a union in 1972 to now 18 economic institutions including the SEWA Trade Facilitation Center

6 A unique model for poverty alleviation
Present Coverage: 3500 women artisans/Shareholders Planned coverage: women artisans Main objectives: Promoting access to national and global markets to the women artisans in the informal sector. Unique Model: poor artisans are the owners of their own company. The major services provided are: STFC IS a unique grass-roots commercial enterprise formed by more than rural artisan-shareholders from desert districts on North gujarat to overcome their impoverished condition through enhanced trade. STFC has transformed their activitiies in to sustaible commercial viable enterprise, providing full income and livelihood secturity to its shareholders through effective integration with mainstream national and global marekts. Marketing (National and International) State-of art Manufacturing facility Product development and design Training and technical assistance Business development services Policy initiatives

Designing, producing and marketing rural artisans’ handicrafts for the global market on a sustainable and scaleable basis STFC grew rapidly out of need for employment among earthquake affected artisans and their communities. Post-earthquake scale of operations unsustainable under previous model. After restructuring, STFC facilities, systems, staff and other resources now capable of expansion.

8 Progress Achieved Achieved turnover : Rs. 50 million Export share: 30% Total Employment Generated : 5000 artisans & 200 garment workers. An average monthly income : Rs. 1500/- to Rs. 2000/- STFC is now moving towards bringing in equity from joint venture partners in the private sectors.

9 Progress Achieved Set up a State – of – Art manufacturing infrastructure Vastralaya with a capacity of 500 pcs./day Integrated scattered production base across two districts of Kutch and Patan with common facility centers. Created a cadre of Grass-root business managers to streamline the entire production process and establish a robust supply chain Provide market access and business development services to other grassroots artisans groups Constituted a core cell within the Ministry of Textiles to enable formulate pro-poor policy.

10 Progress Achieved Business partnerships with large retailers such as Fab India, Shoppers Stop, Trent – Westside, Arvind Mills and International Organizations like Novica, Oxfam, Norm Thompson. Established retail network with own stores in Ahmedabad and New Delhi. Launched its brand “Hansiba” as a ‘Fair Trade’, ‘Hand Crafted’ Made in India product. Technical Partnership with IFC, ICICI and EXIM Bank to evolve a sustainable business strategy.

11 Important Impacts Build a model market oriented Collective Enterprise owned by poor informal sector women workers. Increased access to competitive Global Markets. Sustainable livelihoods for over 10,000 rural women artisans. Attain an export turnover of Rs. 200 million in 3 years. Empowerment of grassroots women workers i.t.o. enabling them to understand the changing global environment that influences their work and lives and assert their needs in this context. Human Capital Benefits : Skill training and managerial capacity building of artisans. Quality of Life Benefits: better education, health and social security at the household level and at the work place

12 Trade for Poor Major Barriers faced by poor grassroots producers :
Create Collective Enterprise to : Size and Organization Market and Information and Access Finance and Technology Training and Skill up-gradation Therefore Low Productivity and Quality Uneconomic scales of operation resulting in lower returns Difficulty in Marketing and Products Results in Low Income, Powerlessness, lack of voice Enable poor producers to become owners and mangers of their women enterprise Provide sustainable employment/ alternative livelihoods Federate groups into collectives to strengthen bargaining power, attaining economies of scale and acquire competitiveness Strong Linkages with mainstream market systems Poverty cannot be addressed if the cruical issue of employment is not maddressed. Women, trade and women and trade need to be understand properly. Women need complete recognisation for their significant contribution to India’s economy as producers, consumeers, and now as managers and driver of economic growth. Trade---

13 Women and Trade: Adequate resource and trade links Investments in different sectors of market infrastructure Promotion to raise productivity, setting up multi skill develoment schools Adequate capital suitable market linkage Better terms of trade Institutional facility to develop R & D for product development Information technology Build up organisational and managerial capacities Enabling effectiveness of policies Te trade is globlised. To access national and international markets, women prducers organisations if provided adequate resources and trade-links, they can make a dent into the global markets. They need investments in different sectors of market infrastructure. They need promotion in terms of raising productivity, praticularrly in setting up multi skill development schools. The women produers organsiations need access to adequate capital, suitable market links and better terms of trade. They need institutional faciltiy that develops reaserch and developemnt of tehir products for improvement and diversificaitons. They want to use IT to keep pace with the fast moving global trade. They need to build up more organisationsl and managerial capacities to run tier businesses profitably and trade firmly. These entepreneral producers organisations also need active supports in the govt for creating more enabliing policies. Today there is a total absence of such intituions that serve professional needs of the poor.

14 Recommendations: Formation of Trade Council
Formation of Trade Security Fund To make dent in to the area of glbal trading that help direct links between grassroots women producers orga. It is recommanded to set up a trade council on women and globla trade, with sepcific terms of reference that helps fulfilling the pressing needs. A trade secutiry fund needs to be formed for providign acceses to fund and investment. This fund would help in meeting the identified needs, build small producers owned enterprises, developing trade nsupportive infrastrucute, and provode relevant trg. Amd market linkages to the poor prod organ.

15 Recommendations: Formation of Trade Council:
To strengthen trade as means for poverty alleviation Provide a platform to highlight the needs for trade related infrastructures for the poor and women specially in the informal sector Build trade linkages between the formal and the informal Encourage the building of institutions that promote women and trade, help build micro-enterprises to provide work and employment security and access to market

16 Trade Council: Proposed Task:
Recommend investments and incentives based on trade related needs Would facilitate identifying various trades that would be taken poor women with respect to globalization and open economics Undertake research and studies to assess the contribution of women in growing global trade Determine needs in terms of infrastructure, technology, R & D Identify global opportunities in global trade Comprise of sector specialists, repres. Of grass-roots enterprises, civil society organsiations and repres. From govt and planning commission

17 Formation of Trade Security Fund:
For providing access to fund and investment To meet the identified needs To build producer owned enterprises, developing trade supportive infrastructure Provide relevant trainings and market linkages


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