Logos Women SessionSupporting Women Entrepreneurs –

Key Players in Pacific Agribusiness Development

Apia, Samoa, 29th August 2016

Programme  and Background Note


Biodata of Speakers

Lear More:




8.15am – 8.45am Registration

Participants to be seated

9.00am – 9.30am Formal Welcome & Opening Remarks

Pacific Women in Agribusiness Launch

– Honourable Fiame Naomi Mata’afa, Deputy Prime Minister of Samoa
– Isolina Boto, Manager & Project Leader on Regional Trade, CTA
– Mereia Volavola, CEO, PIPSO

Followed by Group Photo and Morning Tea

9.30am – 10.15am At the forefront: Pacific Women in Agribusiness  

This session with the Deputy Prime Minister of Samoa will discuss key areas for women in agribusiness across the Pacific. Women-led agribusiness will present some cases followed by an interaction with the audience. The debate will assist CTA, IFAD, PIPSO and other partners in developing an action plan for the Pacific Women in Agribusiness Project to be implemented from September 2016. It aims at providing a platform to mobilise and facilitate more targeted responses for Pacific women entrepreneurs and social enterprises in agribusiness, promote increases market access and provide targeted technical support and capacity building.

– Samoa women in agribusiness: Successes, challenges and needed support to expand
Vargas Rasch, Senior Field Officer, Women in Business Development (WIBDI)

–  Women in agribusiness in Vanuatu: New opportunities in selected sectors
Carolyn Ernst, Chair Livestock Working Group, Vanuatu Chamber of Commerce & Industry

–  Supporting access to finance for women entrepreneurs
Janet Sape, Executive Director, PNG Women in Business

10.15am – 11.00am Panel discussion: Linking Agribusiness to Tourism Markets and Promoting healthy and nutritious food

– Samoa perspective in linking agriculture to tourism and benefiting women businesses
Sonya Hunter, CEO, Samoa Tourism Authority

–  Promoting local food and cuisine and supporting women entrepreneurs
Chef Myriam Malao, Vanuatu

–  Bringing the experience of the Caribbean agribusiness women in agritourism
Ena Harvey, Agritourism expert, IICA

11.00am to 12.15pm The Forward Agenda: Priorities for the Action Plan

– Supporting the private sector in Farm to Table projects
Dr Asif Chida, Inclusive Growth Specialist, UNDP Pacific Centre

–  Supporting the promotion of local and nutritious food in women-led businesses
Sakiusa Tubuna, Sub-Regional Coordinator for the Pacific Asia and the Pacific Division, IFAD

–  Policies, Practices and Partnerships in support of women in agribusiness
Isolina Boto, CTA and Mereia Volavola, PIPSO


12:15pm to 1.00pm               Lunch

1.00pm                                   Industry tours/site visits

Additional materials:


Brussels Briefing 42. Women agribusiness entrepreneurs:

– Agribusiness development in the Pacific: challenges and opportunities for women
Mereia Volavola, CEO, Pacific Island Private Sector Organisation (PIPSO)[Video|Presentation]

– Organic Farm to Table: creating a sustainable supply chain supporting women
Alberta Vitale, Associate Director, Women in Business Dev. (WIBDI), Samoa[Video|Presentation]

Brussels Briefing 37. ‘Building resilience of SIDS through trade and agribusiness development:

– Agricultural trade opportunities in the Pacific: from policies to practice
Veniana Qalo, Senior Trade Policy Specialist, Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat [Video]

– Farm to table: opportunities and connections between farms and the tourism industry
Mereia Volavola, CEO, Pacific Islands Private Sector Organization (PIPSO) [Video|Presentation|Summary]

– Successes in accessing export markets for root crops and lessons learned
Maria Lailai Moi, Director, Ben’s Trading Ltd, Fiji [Video|Presentation|Summary]