An international trade centre and technology hub for women entrepreneurs is coming up in Visakhapatnam district on five acres allotted by the State government. It will stimulate entrepreneurship among women in the State and the country, Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu has said.

He was speaking here on Wednesday after inaugurating a three-day women entrepreneurs’ conference, organised by the Association of Lady Entrepreneurs of Andhra Pradesh (ALEAP) in association with the Andhra Pradesh government.

Women empowerment The Chief Minister said the theme of the conference — innovation, incubation and industrialisation — was very apt and spoke at length on the need for empowerment of women in all sectors and fostering entrepreneurship among them.

Naidu said two decades ago, during his first stint as Chief Minister, he had launched a movement to set up the self-help groups of women and “now they are playing a very key role at the grassroots level in empowering women. During the next phase, they will also stimulate entrepreneurship among women.”

The Chief Minister said it was his aim “to ensure that each family in the State has a minimum income of ₹10,000 a month and it can only be achieved with empowerment of women. Equal opportunities have to be given to women, both in employment and entrepreneurship, he added.

Amzad Hussain B Sial, Secretary-General of Saarc, said the trade and tech hub coming up in Vizag would be of great help not only to women in AP and India, but to the women in the whole Saarc region. He spoke of the Saarc initiatives for encouraging women entrepreneurs.

K. Ramadevi, President of the ALEAP, said industrial parks were being set up at Rajahmundry and Nellore exclusively for women within one month and six more in the State within the next two years or so.

A memorandum of understanding was signed by AP Industries Minister Amarnath Reddy and Rama Devi and Pramila Acharya Rijal, the president of South Asian Women Development Forum, Nepal, for setting up the trade centre and tech hub for women entrepreneurs in Vizag district.