Gender equality must be a priority at a national level, this right must not only be recognized but also effectively applied to all aspects of life: political, economic, social and cultural. Only together, through mutual support and appreciation, the cooperation of men and women will lead to gender equality and to an improvement of living conditions in any modern economy. This was the central message of the conference organized by the National Association of Entrepreneurs “Women’s Entrepreneurship in an Innovative and Changing World”, within the WINGATE project: “Together for a competitive, inclusive Europe”.

Her Excellency, Siri Beate Barry – Ambassador of the Kingdom of Norway in Bucharest, present at the event, said: “Women’s participation is on Norway’s agenda and has become a core value and a Norwegian standard. Gender equality affects all aspects of our lives. Cross-border collaboration in Europe is valuable, and we can gain by sharing experiences, learning from each other, and looking for solutions together, such as through the Wingate project. I can’t stress enough how important it is for women and men to work together to achieve gender equality.

For her part, Cristina Chiriac, president of the National Association of Entrepreneurs, ANAA, has the opinion that: a stronger support of women’s rights, empowering women and ensuring gender balance, will enable all economies to reap the full economic and social potential that they bring as a contribution to society. Negative gender stereotypes must be abandoned, and the support of women by men is a priority for them to reach their full potential. Studies show that more and more women want to become financially independent, open their own business and perform in their fields of activity”. She believes that “in today’s and tomorrow’s world, real equality between women and men is also the key to our economic and social success – not only at European and national level but also in our regions, cities and local communities.

The main objective of the WINGATE project is to create an online platform and an innovative learning center where specialized courses on business ideas, management and business plan, the establishment of a start-up and notions of negotiation, business strategy, communication and PR will be developed. This tools will provide opportunities for participants to improve their presence in the local and international market.

The conference was moderated by Dan Doroftei – entrepreneur and health consultant and started with the messages of the officials: Her Excellency, the Ambassador of the Kingdom of Norway in Bucharest, Siri Beate-Berry, the representative of the Romanian Parliament, Ana Loredana Predescu, deputy, Cristina Chiriac – president of the National Association of Entrepreneurs and Andreea Negru – moderator of the first panel of the conference and Communication Expert of the Wingate project. The second panel “Cross-border cooperation, European economic stimulus”, moderated by Roxana Gabor Iliescu, entrepreneur, founder of Mai Academy, with the following speakers: Agnes Puscas – Project Manager Wingate (Hungary), Aleksandar Bijelic – President of Serbian Venture Network Senev (Serbia) ), Marit H. Silseth – Project Officer Wingate Norway and Angela Gladei – President of the Association of Women Entrepreneurs of the Republic of Moldova (AFAM). In the chapter “Education and innovation”, moderated by Nicoleta Munteanu – founder of Kids in Business, Tova Ben-Nun Cherbis – president and founder of Lauder-Reut Educational Complex, Marius Ghenea – entrepreneur, business angel and author, Corina Puiu – director had presentations executive Rethink and Ana Maria Stancu – CEO of Bucharest Robots. The conference ended with a panel dedicated to “Pandemic Lessons”, moderated by Cristina Dragna – entrepreneur, strategic communication specialist, with the following guests: Raluca Ioana Man – founder of RSEVEN LTD (Cyprus), Daniela Cireașă – founder of Netspace, president of CONAF Brăila, Alina Pătrăhău – the founder of Dăruiește Aripi Association and Mirela Bucovicean – founder of Molecule F.

The event was part of the WINGATE project which will run for a period of 3 years and aims to help women entrepreneurs and business angels in their growth and development.
The project partners are: SKC-Consulting (Hungary) main partner, Serbian Venture Network (Serbia), Women Business Angels (Hungary), Kvinner i Business (Norway) and the National Association of Romanian Entrepreneurs, which also covers the Republic of Moldova.

The Wingate project is funded by Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway through the EEA and Norway Grants Fund for Regional Cooperation.