IFC supports the development of markets and business practices that are inclusive, sustainable, and efficient. This includes a focus on the role of women.
Why? Because a gender view to business can create value for IFC clients and investment projects while improving short- and long-term economic and social well being in developing countries.
In this regard, IFC assists firms to identify and realize new opportunities that include women as business leaders, entrepreneurs, employees, consumers, and community stakeholders whose voice can make a difference. We also work to promote relevant international standards and best practices.
The inclusion of local SMEs — at least some owned by women — in an international supply chain can create positive business relationships with important spin-off effects. The improvement of labor standards and safety for working women can lead to greater factory productivity. The inclusion of women in community impact studies may uncover risks that men would not think and could identify new avenues for mutual benefit.
In fact, gender is a crosscutting issue that affects corporate performance and development outcomes in profound ways. From corporate governance to new market segmentation, from supply chain access to climate change, women must be part of the solution. If they benefit, then business usually can too.