Jinnah Youth Award
Ministry of Youth Affairs has conferred Jinnah Youth Award and a cash prize of Rs.50,000/- to Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry on the basis of various initiatives taken by ICCI for the promotion and development of youth entrepreneurship culture in the country.
Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry (ICCI) was established in 1984 to look after the interests of business community by promoting trade and industry in this region. Since its inception ICCI has taken many initiatives for the maximum facilitation of its members and growth of business activities.
ICCI and CIPE collaboration for entrepreneurship development for youth:
In 2007 Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry in collaboration with Center for International Private Enterprise (CIPE), a US Chamber affiliate organization successfully undertook several initiatives working on Youth issues particularly with focus on entrepreneurship development because entrepreneurship offers an essential avenue for young people to support themselves and their families, grow businesses, to provide employment to others, and play a part in strengthening their country’s economy.
This was the first ever project undertaken by any Chamber of Commerce & Industry in Pakistan, which from different segments brought together youth at one platform to discuss various issues for entrepreneurship development. This initiative by ICCI greatly motivated youth, as result they very actively started participating in various activities of the Chamber, which created tremendous trust and confidence in them for the promotion of entrepreneurship culture.
Initially ICCI formed a Youth Committee to undertake the activities that were the part of the project and to coordinate with stakeholder organizations for its successful completion. Mian Waqas Masud, was nominated as the Chairman of this committee, who has been playing an active role to carry on the youth project. Ministry of youth Affairs selected him as Jury Member for the following:
a. National Youth Award given by Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza
b. National Business Plan Competition.
He being the jury member gave his valuable input in evaluation of National Business Development Plan competition and Youth Award.
ICCI held two youth forums, in which a large number of young business professionals and students participated and deliberated on many aspects of youth with a particular focus on entrepreneurship development. They came up with many ideas and suggestions that how youth can play an important role in national building upon provision of conducive environment to them for successful launch of business ventures for the economic development of the country. Annex “A” and “B” provide an overview of the salient points that were discussed in these forums.
National Youth Conference:
In 2008 ICCI, CIPE and Ministry of Youth Affairs jointly organized a National Youth Conference which brought together 130 students and young entrepreneurs across the country to provide direct feedback to policymakers in formulation of the National Youth Policy. In the conference following four important areas of the draft National Youth Policy were discussed:-
— Skill Development
— Micro Finance
Secretary Ministry of Youth Affairs was also invited at the conference who highly appreciated the initiative of Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry for holding the conference and discussing the important elements of the draft National Youth Policy. He also assured for incorporation of various recommendation in the policy for its effective implementation for the betterment of youth. He also invited ICCI input for the National Business Development Plan Competition, in which Chairman Youth Committee of ICCI participated. Annex “C” provides complete details of the conference.
Representation of Youth in the Executive Committee, standing committees of ICCI and government advisory boards/task force:
After participation in two Youth Forums and Youth Conference, young entrepreneurs started taking keen interest in various activities of ICCI. In 2008-09 elections 6 young entrepreneurs (25% of the Executive Committee) were elected as member of the Executive Committee, who are playing very positive role for the progress and promotion of the Chamber. They are also acting as the Chairmen of relevant standing committees to give feedback on respective areas and send recommendations to the Chamber on policy issues which are forwarded to relevant stakeholder organizations for consideration. ICCI also recommended them on government advisory boards/tasks forces, where they are actively engaged in giving input on policy issues.
Business Development Plan Competition in Collaboration with NUST and Mentorship program:
In 2009, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry held a Business Development Plan Competition at ICCI in collaboration with National University of Science and Technology (NUST) in which students of MBA gave presentations on following 11 innovative projects and floated new ideas for starting various kinds of business activities:-
· Funeral services
· Women transport
· Women clothing
· Home delivery services of food items
· Oxygen bars
· Consultancy services for students’ career counseling (2-projects)
· Unique Business cards
· Car repair and maintenance shop with unique idea
· Fruity expressions
· Use of innovative tools for the Improve of resource management in hotels
In this competition, CEOs of multinational companies were also invited, who greatly appreciated initiative of ICCI and NUST.
On the invitation of NUST business professionals from ICCI provided mentorship to the students and created a spirit of entrepreneurship culture in them that how they could start their own businesses successfully. The management and students of NUST highly appreciated mentorship program, which both the institutions agreed to, carry on regular basis.
ICCI has also created a strong linkage with renowned universities in Islamabad, where they invite office bearers to give lectures to the students on entrepreneurship development. This arrangement really helps the students to know how to get into the business arena for self sustainability and to contribute for the economic growth of the country.
ICCI also makes arrangements at ICCI premises to give presentations to the students from the universities about the successful business development practices, and act as a mentor for them. ICCI also provides them the platform to discuss their issues and obstacles that create hindrance in the way of starting a new business venture.
Representation of ICCI at World Chamber Congress and other international programs:
Mr.Shaban Khalid, Vice President, a young and dynamic business professional along with Mr.Waqas Masud, Chairman Youth Committee of ICCI participated in the World Chambers Congress in Malaysia in June 2009. They presented the following papers on:
- ICCI initiative on Youth Development and leadership role of youth in ICCI
- Good governance practices and sharing of information with the business leaders in the congress
In the congress about 900 delegates from 90 countries participated, and discussed many ideas about the leadership role of youth in the Chambers. The presentation given by ICCI fetched attention of many countries and they pledged to develop a strong networking with ICCI and to exchange youth delegations and ideas.
Ministry of Youth Affairs selected young business entrepreneurs from Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry, who successfully represented ICCI in the following workshops and programs in India and China:
- Commonwealth Asia Regional Capacity Building Workshop on Youth Entrepreneurship
- China Youth Exchange Program
Young entrepreneurs exchange programs with foreign Chambers
ICCI is developing a close and strong liaison with various chambers around the globe for the exchange of youth delegations and information. This strong networking will provide excellent opportunity of sharing innovative ideas and to learn the best practices of each other.
Case Study by ICCI and CIPE:
ICCI in collaboration with CIPE is currently in the process of preparing a case study on the youth entrepreneurship development. The study will present a complete overview of the initiatives undertaken by ICCI and the future strategy to carry on various initiatives for the active role of youth in entrepreneurship development and economy of the country. A capstone meeting is planned to be held on June 22, in which representatives from CIPE, USA will also participate to discuss the future strategy. On the basis of these discussions and work done by ICCI Mr.Salman Ali, Consultant CIPE shall prepare a comprehensive case study, which shall also be submitted to Ministry of Youth Affairs.
Upcoming projects and programs:
- Business Incubation Center (BIC)
ICCI is in the process of establishing a Business Incubation Center, where under the guidance of experienced business professionals incubation services shall be provided to the new and young business starters. ICCI has floated this idea to management of universities, who showed keen interest for collaboration with ICCI in this project. BIC shall be launched shortly upon arranging various resources.
- Seminars and mentorship events
ICCI shall organize seminars and mentorship events for the youth on the following topics:
· Real fact and challenges for entering into a new business
· Need assessment for becoming an entrepreneur
· Networking & it’s worth for business development
- Business Development Plan Competitions
ICCI in collaboration with NUST has held a business plan completion and is in a close liaison with other renowned universities for arranging business development plan competitions at ICCI.
- Coordination with various National and international Youth Forums:
ICCI is also collaborating with national and international Youth forums and plans to work on the common issues of youth. ICCI has developed strong linkage with PILDAT and has jointly deliberated on important issues concerning youth and their role in the national economy.
- Publication of magazine highlighting youth issues
ICCI plans to bring out a magazine in which issues concerning youth shall be highlighted. This magazine will also cover the expert opinions and guidelines of the business leaders, which shall help the youth in successfully getting into the business.