The Mastercard Index of Women’s Entrepreneurship (MIWE) came out on 9th March 2018. The index showed that 46.6% of Ghanaian businesses are under women ownership. This highlighted the country as one the top performing countries in Africa. The MIWE helps in understanding and telling factors and conditions that can be used to close the gender gap within business owners in any state. The index highlights three factors that include; Access to Knowledge and Financial Services, Supporting Entrepreneurial Factors and Women’s Advancement Outcomes. The index studied 57 different economies globally. Amongst them were Ethiopia, South Africa, Uganda, and Botswana. Malawi, Nigeria, and Ghana were newly added.
In terms of advancement outcomes, Ghana and Nigeria were the best. Women entrepreneurship factor was at 100%. Nigeria’s overall score was at 62.4% and Ghana had 59.1%. Moreover, African countries did well in women labor force participation. Malawi scored 100% followed by Ghana at 96.1% and the third one was Ethiopia with a score of 86.6%. In terms of sharing assets and knowledge with women and offering financial access, South Africa did well by scoring 84.3%. This placed it at the 6th position out of 57 countries. Botswana came second after South Africa with a score of 73%.
Overall score saw Botswana taking the lead in Africa by 66.5% followed by South Africa at 64.2%. Botswana is leading with the highest number of Supporting Entrepreneurial Conditions. This is compared to other markets in Africa. It scored 68.1% which was a 2% increase from 2017. This shows that Botswana has good Cultural Perceptions of Women Entrepreneurs and Quality of Governance. Africa excelled in terms of women financial inclusion. South Africa lead by 98.7% followed by Ghana with 84.6% and Ethiopia came third at 77.1%.
The findings proved that women entrepreneurs in developing countries are driven by determination and gifts. Furthermore, they work extra hard to provide for their families. Furthermore, it proves that women play an important role in African economic growth. Women entrepreneurs in developing countries are working hard. Moreover, they are innovating in creating a brighter tomorrow for their families.
The encouraging part of the index is that African women are positively embracing their culture. Uganda is leading at 69.1% followed by Nigeria at 67.2%. The figures have bypassed their Middle Eastern colleagues. But the limited access to finance, entrepreneurial skills and educations affect the women’s urge to own businesses. Gender and cultural biases are affecting women in both developed and developing countries. These restrict them from opening their own businesses.
For instance, New Zealand ranked as number one overall does not receive well the female entrepreneurs. This is because they take them to be less knowledgeable compared to men. Portugal came at the 6th position overall on the Index scoring 69.1%. But women are restricted by cultural practices. They also face difficulties in accessing trade finance, insurance or bank loans.