Dubai: Emirati women can start a business in Ajman without paying registration fees, thanks to an initiative by Ajman Businesswomen's Council, Gulf News has learnt.

The Ajman Businesswomen's Council, operating under the umbrella of the Ajman Chamber of Commerce and Industry, helps women start their own businesses by helping them obtain licences with a fee exemption valid for three years. The exemption spares women from regular fees paid to the Municipality and the Chamber of Commerce.

"The Council encourages women's economic investments, and sponsors their initiatives to get engaged with self-employed fields inside and outside the UAE," said Aisha Khalfan Bin Badr, President of the Ajman Businesswomen's Council.

The Council has helped about 150 Emirati women in Ajman to launch their own businesses since its establishment in 2005, said Bin Badr.

"We do believe that women are just as capable of succeeding in the business world as men, and that Arab women are equally competent as their Western counterparts in this field," said Raja Easa Saleh Al Gurg, President of the Dubai Businesswomen's Council.

Raja, who spoke at the Emirates Women's Award launch yesterday, said each year more and more women are entering the business world.

How difficult is it for a woman to be an entrepreneur? Have gender biases been an issue for you or anyone you know when starting a business?