India, which is yet to step up overall conditions conducive to the success of women entrepreneurs, has ranked among the lowest ‘Women Business Ownership’ index, a survey has revealed. “Women entrepreneurs have been carving out a niche for them across the globe, including India especially in niche and unconventional businesses. However, there is significant potential to harness the untapped potential of women’s entrepreneurship in India”, according to Mastercard Index of Women Entrepreneurs.
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According to the index India scored an overall 41.7 points, ranking 49 among 54 economies globally with comparatively low in Women Business Ownership percentages.
The index uses 12 indicators and 25 sub-indicators in 54 economies across Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa, North America, Latin America and Europe, representing 78.6 percent of the world’s female labour force.
It said India presents lower opportunities for women to assume leadership roles, participation in the workforce or engagement in entrepreneurial activities – a disparity that explain the low scores for Business Ownership by Women in the country.
“While necessity and grit are often important to foster women entrepreneurship, strong supporting conditions are an imperative for ensuring a high business ownership by women. While India is yet to travel a long road for scaling up opportunities that foster women entrepreneurship, the potential presented by the country is vast,” said Mastercard Advisors Senior Vice President and Group Head – South Asia/Advisors CoE Sukanyya Misra.
She said, lack of education, technological know-how and cultural bias coupled with stringent business and government regulations are some key impediments that happen to undermine women’s ability to rise to positions of leadership and take advantage of entrepreneurial opportunities in India.
Overall developed markets top the index, led by New Zealand (74.4), Canada (72.4) and the United States (69.9). These countries have the strongest conditions that support women business ownership, such as robust small- and mid-sized business communities, a high quality of governance and ease of doing business, the survey said.
On the other hand, lower-income economies like Uganda (34.8 per cent), Bangladesh (31.6 per cent) and Vietnam (31.4 per cent) have some of the highest percentages of women entrepreneurs, driven mostly by necessity as opposed to being inspired by business opportunities, it added.