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Gulf women could claim an equal share of region’s wealth

Shaikha Hessa says barriers and obstacles are being lifted all the time

Gulf News

Dubai: Women in the Gulf could own more than 50 per cent of the region’s wealth, according to Shaikha Hessa Al Sabah, Chairperson of the Board of Arab Women Business Council. In Saudi Arabia, women are some of the top property owners, she said.

Shaikha Hessa’s comments came at a Dubai conference that brought together the heads of business councils from the GCC, Armenia, Moscow and Abkhazia.

“Women in the gulf region have come a long way, lifting all kinds of barriers and challenging obstacles that they often face in their journey toward establishing a foothold in business,” she said.

Shaikha Hessa, in her own estimation, Saudi women could very well be sitting on $300 billion (Dh1.1 trillion) and adds that once the cultural environment evolves into a more hospitable environment for Arab women, they could easily command a higher role in influencing economic issues and businesses.

Shaikha Hessa also talked about the strong presence of Emirati women in politics and business.

According to the Emirates Business Women Council, Emirati women’s assets are estimated at Dh12 billion. She pointed to the example of key figures in business such as Lubna Al Alian and Raja Al Gurg.