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Qatari Women Urged to be Entrepreneurial

Aisha Al Fardan, the Vice-Chairman of Qatari Business Women Forum (QBWF), wants to see more women entering the business and professional fields in Qatar.

"Women are very strong and patient, perhaps more than men. This is why women are daughters, mothers, and housewives and many businesswomen are juggling all these roles ? we can do the same," she said.

"This is why I motivate and strongly encourage women to have a business or professional career. It will help her develop, it will motivate her family, and finally yet importantly, it will help the society as a whole"

Al Fardan spoke to The Peninsula on the sidelines of the Qatar Business Woman Award 2008 press conference here on Wednesday.

Al Fardan believes in the axiom, if you put your mind into something you will achieve it. "Balancing family life with business and work can be challenging. It was difficult for me to attend the university while pregnant and having children, but now I have cleared those obstacles."

In the beginning, Al Fardan was a banker, but later on, with much encouragement and motivation from her family, she joined the family business. "I started off as a banker, and currently I don't have my own business. I actually joined the family business after numerous requests from family to join. They needed my help with the various companies we have, so I was able to contribute greatly to the family business," Al Fardan said.

Her participation in the business field has contributed greatly to Qatar's growing economy. "Our business shows many positive things to Qatar's economy. The real-estate business is going well, car business is on the growth, and the Pearl Island project is flourishing. All these are signals of Qatar's ever-growing future," she said.

The fact of being a woman makes participating in the business or professional fields very challenging. "The biggest challenge for me is to spread the idea that we are equal to men, I don't mean to be exactly like them, especially in terms of being the head, we never asked for this place because we would much rather work together as a team," she said.

"Maybe some men think we are trying to take their places in society, but no, we want to work together with them side by side for the sake of our country."

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