Best and Worst Places for Women Entrepreneurs

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A study commissioned by the Inter-American Development Bank’s Multilateral Investment Fund ranks countries in Latin America and the Caribbean based on risks and support to women entrepreneurs.

Here they are from the worst to the best...

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Best and Worst Places for Women Entrepreneurs

  1. The best and worst places for women entrepreneurs in Latin America and the Caribbean
  2. A study commissioned by the Inter-American Development Bank’s Multilateral Investment Fund ranks countries in Latin America and the Caribbean based on risks and support to women entrepreneurs. Here they are from the worst to the best...
  3. #20 Jamaica Women  may  have  good  access  to  business  networks  and   voca6onal  programs,  but  they  enjoy  li;le  social  services   support.  The  biggest  obstacles:  poor  investor  confidence  due   to  the  government’s  weak  fiscal  health,  lack  of  SME  technical   support  and  limited  credit  availability. CC Image courtesy of daimoneklund on Flickr
  4. #19 Paraguay There  are  programs  suppor6ng  women  entrepreneurial   development,  but  female  enrolment  in  voca6onal  courses  is   minimal.  There  is  also  poor  presence  of  women  in  business   enterprises  and  associa6ons.  Women  have  low  access  to   finance  and  technology. CC Image courtesy of Arcadiuš on Flickr
  5. #17 Venezuela High  infla6on  and  capital  flight  deter  entrepreneurship  in   general.  Women  struggle  to  get  loans  and  have  limited   opportuni6es  for  voca6onal  training. CC Image courtesy of Oriana Eliçabe on Flickr
  6. #17 El Salvador Access  to  finance  for  women  entrepreneurs  and  managers  is   among  the  lowest  in  the  region.  Tied  for  17th  place  with   Venezuela,  El  Salvador  has  no  MSME  law  in  place.  Women,   though,  benefit  from  strong  property  rights  and  low  total  tax   rate. Photo courtesy Living Water International | www.water.cc
  7. #16 Guatemala The  economy  is  rela6vely  stable,  but  the  cost  of  star6ng  and   expanding  businesses  is  high.  Women  enjoy  sufficient   property  rights  protec6on  and  child  care  support  but  have   poor  access  to  technology  due  to  the  country’s  low  Internet   penetra6on  rate,  and  paltry  savings  rates  at  financial   ins6tu6ons. Photo courtesy Shopmayu | www.shopmayu.com
  8. #15 Nicaragua Women  find  it  difficult  to  obtain  SME  loans,  partly  due  to   banks’  conserva6ve  lending  prac6ces.  Other  obstacles  for   female  entrepreneurs:  heavy  tax  rates,  poor  technology   access,  low  business  sophis6ca6on  and  unequal  property   rights  protec6on. Photo courtesy OikocreditUSA | www.oikiocreditusa.org
  9. #13 Honduras More  than  a  tenth  of  female  top  MSME  managers  say  firms   have  to  bribe  public  officials  to  get  things  done.  It  is  unclear  if   the  provision  on  strengthening  gender  equality  under  the   2008  MSME  law  has  been  implemented  or  monitored. Photo by Cjmadson / CC BY-SA
  10. #13 Bolivia Tied  for  13th  place  with  Honduras,  Bolivia  provides  strong   property  rights  for  women.  But  compared  to  the  rest  of  the   region,  more  female  entrepreneurs  say  bribery  is  prevalent   and  have  to  endure  more  security  costs. CC Image courtesy of rabble on Flickr
  11. #12 Ecuador The  cost  of  doing  business  has  gone  down  and  MSME   regula6ons  are  deemed  comprehensive.  But  MSME  technical   support  is  not  available  consistently.  There  is  also  a  lack  of   women-­‐specific  training  programs. CC Image courtesy of IICD on Flickr
  12. #11 Dominican Republic In  2010,  women  owned  nearly  half  of  all  businesses  and  about   a  fiWh  of  companies  have  women  as  senior  managers.   Government  spending  on  social  services,  however,  is   inadequate.  About  60  percent  of  MSMEs  view  corrup6on  as  an   obstacle  to  doing  business. CC Image courtesy offvarious visual stuff on Flickr
  13. #10 Brazil Many  women  entrepreneurs  can  get  loans  from  banks  and   financial  investments.  Beyond  benefi6ng  from  good  social   services  support  such  as  elderly  and  child  care,  they  receive   technical  support  from  government  agencies.  Corrup6on  and   crime  percep6on  among  MSMEs,  though,  remain  high. CC Image courtesy of Adam Jones, Ph.D. - Global Photo Archive on Flickr
  14. #9 Panama With  a  solid  MSME  legisla6on,  women  entrepreneurs   encounter  few  barriers  in  doing  business.  But  access  to   microfinance  is  low  —  fewer  than  half  of  microloan  borrowers   are  women. CC Photo courtesy mac_filko on Flickr
  15. #8 Trinidad & Tobago Compared  to  their  counterparts  in  the  region,  fewer  women   MSME  managers  say  they  need  to  bribe  public  officials  to  “get   things  done.”  SME  technical  support  for  women  entrepreneurs   is  limited,  though. Photo courtesy Youth Business Trinidad and Tobago | www.ybtt.org
  16. #7 Argentina With  sufficient  child,  elderly  and  health  care,  women  have   more  6me  for  entrepreneurial  pursuits.  Exorbitant  total  tax   rate  for  businesses  (108%  in  2012)  bars  entrepreneurship. CC Photo courtesy illuminaut on Flickr
  17. #6 Costa Rica The  risks  of  doing  business  –  corrup6on,  crime  and  disorder  –   for  MSMEs,  which  account  for  around  70  percent  of  the   economy,  are  rela6vely  low.  Women  MSME  owners  can  avail   of  broad  technical  assistance  but  li;le  support  from  banks. CC Photo courtesy janeyesee on Flickr
  18. #5 Uruguay Women  owned  around  40%  of  MSMEs  in  2012,  according  to   the  government.  Though  access  to  finance  remains  a  huge   challenge,  women  can  take  advantage  of  capacity  and  skills   training  programs  as  well  as  social  services  which  are  regarded   as  among  the  best  in  the  region. CC Photo courtesy Libertinus on Flickr
  19. #4 Mexico Women  have  good  access  to  business  networks  and   microfinance  products  and  services  (90%  of  women  account   for  microloan  borrowers).  Social  services  are  robust,  though   oWen  they’re  not  available  to  women  and  only  offered  in   ci6es. CC Photo courtesy Dainis Matisons on Flickr
  20. #3 Colombia Colombia  serves  women  entrepreneurs  well,  with  legisla6on   ins6tu6onalizing  technical,  management  and  organiza6onal   support  to  women-­‐owned  MSMEs  na6onwide.  Women  MSME   managers  also  have  great  access  to  business  organiza6ons   such  as  microfinance  network  Women’s  World  Banking.  The   cost  of  doing  business,  however,  is  considered  higher  than   average. CC Photo courtesy Luz Adriana Villa A. on Flickr
  21. #2 Peru It  is  rela6vely  easy  for  women  entrepreneurs  to  start  a   business,  access  SME  financing  and  avail  of  capacity  and  skills   training.  Peru  tops  most  other  countries  in  the  region  when  it   comes  to  social  services  for  women. CC Photo courtesy Embajada de Estados Unidos en Perú on Flickr
  22. #1 Chile The  country  offers  the  most  favorable  environment  for  women   entrepreneurs,  with  solid  fiscal  condi6on,  poli6cal  and   ins6tu6onal  stability,  strong  investor  confidence,  percep6on  of   good  governance,  low  security  risk,  adequate  social  services   and  high  access  to  technology. CC Photo courtesy We-the solution on Flickr
  23. Read more on boosting women entrepreneurship Early lessons from Wal-Mart’s sourcing from women entrepreneurs Boosting women’s entrepreneurship via mobile money

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