Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry (ICCI) in collaboration with Center for International Private Enterprise (CIPE) and Kauffman Foundation celebrated the Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW) to promote entrepreneurial culture, especially in the youth of the country. The event was attended by a large number of young entrepreneurs, established businessmen and students of different institutes.
The participants thoroughly discussed the key impediments being faced by the aspiring entrepreneurs in Pakistan and also highlighted the importance of entrepreneurship for economic development of the country. The discussants highlighted that many developed countries achieved fast economic growth by promoting entrepreneurship and Pakistan has a lot to learn from their experience to accelerate the pace of its economic development.
The students underlined the need to develop a better entrepreneurial culture by making entrepreneurship an integral part educational curriculum. They were of the view that private sector support in mentorship programs at college and university level would greatly help in promoting entrepreneurial culture in the country.
Speaking on the occasion, Mr.Zafar Bakhtawari, President ICCI said that ICCI is the first Chamber of the country that focused on youth development and organized many conferences, forums and seminars inviting youth and university students to generate more interest in youth for entrepreneurship. He said that our youth possesses immense potential and talent that must be exploited by harnessing their skills and capabilities and facilitating them to towards entrepreneurship.
ICCI President also shared his personal success story with the students as to how with a humble start, he has now emerged as a well-established entrepreneur and also informed them about many available business opportunities in different fields which the youngsters could exploit even with small initial investment.
Mr. Hammad Siddiqui, Deputy Country director, CIPE highlighted the role of CIPE and said that CIPE has been actively engaged with chambers and associations to promote entrepreneurial culture in Pakistan. He said that Pakistan is passing through tough times characterized by sluggish economy & fewer job opportunities. However, he stressed that the only way to take advantage of youth bulge is to provide an environment that encourages youth to adopt entrepreneurial career instead of competing for scarce jobs.
Mr. Shaban Khalid, Former Vice President and Chairman of ICCI Young Entrepreneurship Forum highlighted the activities of Youth Forum of ICCI and said that celebration of GEW was another effort of ICCI to promote entrepreneurship culture which would ultimately generate a wave of entrepreneurship development across the country.