The Consortium of Women Entrepreneurs of India (CWEI) organised Uttarakhand State Conference on Geographical Indication (GI) and trademark of Uttarakhand products and to promote village businesses of State across the country and abroad. This conference was attended by 80 local organisations of women entrepreneurs from various districts of the State. Many also displayed their products at the conference. These women entrepreneurs from various districts like Pauri, Rudraprayag and Chamoli interacted with representatives of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD), and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) to know how these bodies can help the local businesses to grow their businesses.
The women were also educated about GI and its importance in expanding local business.
Speaking about the event, the chairman of CWEI Shashi Singh said that there are many products produced in Uttarakhand and are sold in other States too but they do not get identified as Uttarakhand's products across the country. She said Uttarakhand has diversity and uniqueness to its products like certain herbs, art, pulses, handicrafts, essential oils, stinging nettle fibre among others which must be recognised at national and international level.
"Through our conference, we aim to raise awareness among local women entrepreneurs, especially from rural areas, about what assistance they can seek through various government agencies and policies. Uttarakhand needs promotion and protection of their products exclusively produced in the State as they have great potential to become famous brands at national and international markets," said Singh.
Local businesswomen who participated in the event also revealed that the products made in the State are sold at wholesale rates to other States but they are not recognised as Uttarakhand's products. "We sell jewellery made from waste papers and other handicraft items to Rajasthan and Kolkata and many buy these things there thinking the items are made in those states. We want the State Government to assist in the promotion of the locally produced products so that our products can be recognised at the national level," said Ashwin Manu from Pauri district.
Also, the women participants revealed the event was quite helpful for them to understand the process and ways through which they can expand their businesses at national and international markets. The chairperson of CWEI also revealed that the organisation will soon start their conferences at all the districts in Uttarakhand to interact and educate more women entrepreneurs.