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07 to 08 May 2024 | Open meeting

FFF 2024 banner

The United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) is hosting its second edition of the Feminist Finance Forum in Bangkok, Thailand from 7 – 8 May 2024. The in-person Forum will convene women entrepreneurs, investors, financial service providers, policymakers, thought leaders, ecosystem enablers, representatives from civil society and women grassroots organizations, and academia. The interactive event will include a diverse mix of plenaries, concurrent sessions, as well as side-events and networking spaces.   

The Forum will allow participants to:  

  • Expand their networks of women entrepreneurs, investors, financial service providers, policymakers, and other ecosystem actors. 
  • Learn from and share experiences, tools and opportunities for improving gender-responsive financing in Asia and the Pacific with leaders in this field.   
  • Contribute to tangible outcomes, meaningful actions, and a regional vision for closing the gender finance gap in Asia and the Pacific. 

 

The objective of the Forum is to foster meaningful dialogue and generate concrete action towards closing the gender-finance gap in Asia and the Pacific. 

If you're interested in participating, kindly complete the registration form below by filling in all the required information. Should you need any further clarification, please reach out to Ms. Maria Victoria Baldaccini for assistance (email: [email protected]), with copy to Ms. Zhanna Tlegenova (email: [email protected])

 

Interested participants,
please register 

Registration for FFF-2024
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07 May 2024
09:00
10:30
OPENING PLENARY: Taking a Feminist Approach to Finance: Challenging the Status Quo in the Financial Architecture

MC:  

Joy Anderson - Founder and President, Criterion Institute 

Speakers:

H.E. Ping Kitnikone - Ambassador of Canada to the Kingdom of Thailand

Rupa Chanda - Director, Trade, Investment and Innovation Division, ESCAP 

Helianti Hilman - Founder and Chairperson, Javara

Eseta Nadakuitavuki - Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Women, Children and Social Protection, Fiji 

Amanda Satterly - Principal Social Development (Gender and Development) Specialist, Asian Development Bank

Flaubert Mbiekop - Senior Programme Specialist, IDRC

Lennise Ng - Co-Founder and CEO, Borong

Darshni Nagaria - Development Economist and Research Specialist, ESCAP

07 May 2024
10:50
12:05
Catalyzing Positive Transformation: Collaborative Strategies for Women’s Financial Inclusion
Meeting Room G

At the 2023 Feminist Finance Forum, ESCAP launched a Community of Practice (CoP) to promote South-South exchange on Women’s Financial Inclusion. As part of this initiative, this workshop will bring together policymakers and financial service providers (FSPs) to explore the challenges they face while striving to collaborate on gender-responsive financial inclusion strategies. With a focus on the pivotal role regulators play in influencing behavioral change within the finance sector, the workshop will spotlight specific tools they can leverage for success and underscore the significance of public-private partnerships. Combining group discussions with structured learning activities, the workshop will equip participants with enriched knowledge and skills crucial for catalyzing positive transformation and realizing financial equity.  

Facilitators: 

Shawn Hunter - Industry Fellow (APEC) & Director, Inclusive Growth Programs, Griffith Asia Institute   

Connie G. Hina - Co-founder / Chief Technical Director, ACCESS Advisory Services and Financial Inclusion Consultant, Griffith Asia Institute 

The Role of Financial Institutions for Ensuring Justice in Energy Transitions
Meeting Room F

The energy transition away from fossil fuels, imperative for addressing climate change, presents challenges and opportunities to societies, economies, communities, and individuals.This shift has profound and distinct socio-economic and socio-environmental implications on those whose livelihoods depend currently on fossil fuels, exposing them to job and livelihood losses, long-term environmental and health impacts left by the legacy of extractive activities, often unevenly distributed with effects felt by vulnerable groups, such as Indigenous Peoples, women, youth and children. For these implications to be addressed, financial support and finance regulation for the transition should not only reflect a good understanding of related challenges and opportunities but need to provide measures to accurately address the needs of those affected in a timely and context-specific manner.    

Moderator:  

Lisa Braun - Climate Partnerships and Coordination, ESCAP 

Kal Joffres - CEO, Tandemic 

Speakers/Facilitators: 

Bernadette Victorio - Fair Finance Asia Lead, Oxfam

Amanda Satterly - Principal Social Development (Gender and Development) Specialist, Asian Development Bank   

Wilatluk Sinswat - Research Fellow, Stockholm Environment Institute     

Inclusive & Accessible Finance for Women Entrepreneurs with Disabilities
Meeting Room H

The session, hosted in partnership with Impact Hub, aims to address the pervasive issue of exclusion faced by women entrepreneurs with disabilities in accessing entrepreneur support and financial services. Featuring narratives from three women entrepreneurs with disabilities, and showcasing their journeys towards gaining access to finance, the session will highlight the obstacles these women entrepreneurs have overcome and the innovative solutions they have devised to navigate inaccessible infrastructure and processes. Despite their resilience and creativity, these entrepreneurs often face limited opportunities and inadequate support structures.  

Moderator:  

Pichmony Thay - Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Expert, Impact Hub 

Speakers:  

Tath Nika - Founder, Nika's Seeing Hands Massage Therapy Center 

Beatrice Leong - Founder, Autism Inclusiveness Direct Action Group & Project Lily 

Rupa Aryal - Founder, Aama Chori Achar

12:05
14:00
Redefining Legacy: Asian Families at the Forefront of Impact Investing in Asia-Pacific (CLOSED DOOR)
Asia-Pacific Foyer

Moderator/Facilitator: 

Eleanor Keppelman - Impact Investing Director, Investing in Women 

Rhea See - CEO, SheLovesTech

Virginia Tan - Founding Partner, Teja Ventures 

 

 

13:00
14:15
Bridging Borders, Building Opportunities: Advancing Gender-driven Foreign Direct Investment (FDI)
Meeting Room G

FDI can have a positive impact on gender outcomes more broadly and women entrepreneurs specifically. For example, FDI can provide working capital for women-owned and led startups; through locally and gender-driven procurement policies, foreign direct investors can enable the integration of women entrepreneurs into domestic, regional, and global value chains, providing opportunities to expand access to new markets and distribution networks; and FDI can give women entrepreneurs access to new knowledge and expertise. The session aims to achieve two key outcomes through a facilitated brainstorming session with investment promotion agencies and foreign direct investors:

  • Recommendations for gender value propositions
  • Action points for IPAs engaging investors to undertake gender initiatives in their investment projects

Opening and closing remarks:

Heather L. Taylor-Strauss - Economic Affairs Officer, ESCAP 

Moderator:

Michelle Wong - Co-founder of KW Group APAC FDI Advisory

Building Women's Savings through Community-Based and Grassroots Financial Services
Meeting Room H

This session addresses the risks of harm to women, from mainstream microcredit programmes by introducing savings led microfinance models to build women’s financial resilience. Research has found that unintended risks of harm from mainstream microfinance for women are an increased workload, risk of indebtedness, prevalence of Violence against Women (VAW) and exclusion of the most vulnerable and disadvantaged populations. As an alternative mechanism, three community-based micro-savings groups will be introduced and discussed as a tool for driving lasting poverty alleviation and gender empowerment, providing women a safe space to save their own money, develop their financial literacy skills and reduce dependency in a culturally appropriate manner. The models discussed are grown from within communities and stem from indigenous practices to support informal women. 

Moderator:

Darshni Nagaria - Development Economist and Research Specialist, ESCAP

Facilitator:  

Sara Niner - Senior Lecturer, Monash University 

Speakers:  

Phalla Nao - Saving Lives Coordinator, Mith Samlanh

Gunjan Dallakoti - SME Development Specialist, ILO

Scaling Up Access to Angel Investment Across the Region
Meeting Room F

This session aims to brainstorm with angel investors and policy-makers in the region on how the regulatory landscape should be shaped to facilitate capital from angel investment and channel this capital source to meet the needs of women-owned and -led MSMEs. The session will be conducted through a regulatory sandbox exercise.    

Facilitators:   

Hester Spiegel-van den Steenhoven - Managing Director, Epic Angels 

Megha Jindal - Angel Investor   

Nirjhor Rahman - CEO, Bangladesh Angels Network  

Tina Di Cicco - Head of Impact, Manila Angel Investor Network (MAIN)

14:35
15:50
Linking Finance and Gender: How Can Sustainable Debt Instruments Foster Gender Equality
Meeting Room H

This session is hosted in partnership with the Luxembourg Stock Exchange with the focus on the concrete usage of sustainable debt instruments (Use of Proceeds bonds and sustainability linked bonds) for gender related investments. Through various initiatives, including the recent launch of a new flag on the security cards of sustainable securities displayed on the Luxembourg Green Exchange (LGX), the session highlight securities that allocate a portion of their financing to concrete projects and strategies that advance gender equality objectives and contribute to UN SDG 5: The gender focused bond flag. It will raise awareness about this new market among potential issuers and will highlight different challenges and opportunities in addressing gender equality in capital markets.   

Moderator/Facilitator:

Paul Chahine - Sustainable Finance Manager, Luxembourg Stock Exchange

Speakers:

H.E. Patrick Hemmer - Luxembourg Ambassador to the Kingdom of Thailand, Laos, Malaysia, Singapore, Vietnam and ASEAN 

Poonsit Wongthawatchai - Head of Environmental Social and Governance Division, Krungsri 

Suhela Khan - Women's Economic Empowerment Programme Lead, UN Women – India 

Supporting Gender-Responsive Climate-Related Loss and Damage Mechanisms
Conference Room 4

Climate shocks expose women, girls and people living with disabilities to new and more intense forms of exploitations. The impacts of climate disasters particularly threaten women’s agency and human rights. Over 80% of people currently displaced by climate related events are women and girls. Financial support schemes often lead to an increase of discriminatory practices and to increased indebtedness of women. The L&D mechanism should thus not be limited by a specific end‐point as it should encompass immediate and urgent L&D actions to address the associated risks and long‐term mechanisms to develop adaptive capacity for slow onset events, in order to build immediate and long‐term resilience of vulnerable ecosystems and populations including women, children, the disabled and the minority groups.   

Moderator:

Prof. Mizan R. Khan - Technical Lead, LDC Universities Consortium on Climate Change (LUCCC)

Speakers:

Bambang Brodjonegoro - Former Minister of Finance, Indonesia   

Sobita Gautam - Member of Parliament, Nepal 

Sana Kapadia - Chief Catalyst, Heading for Change

Investing with Intention: Innovative Finance at the Climate-Gender Nexus  
Meeting Room G

Merging the gender and climate investment agendas has the power to help create more resilient and equitable societies; whether one leads with climate or one leads with gender, and across many sectors. In recent years, more investors and funders have recognised the importance of this nexus, developing innovative financing mechanisms in gender and climate. This interactive session will showcase these innovations and explore the spectrum of capital that investors and funders can use to meet our climate emergency while driving financial returns and positive outcomes for women and the world.  

Moderator: 

Natalie Au - Programme Manager, 2X Global (Moderator)  

Speakers: 

Melissa Kang - Founder & CEO, Enyorra Private Equity   

Jodi Smith - Founder, Matanataki  

Neeti Katoch - Gender Specialist, Asian Development Bank 

Making Banks Work for Women: Closing the Gender Gap in Financial Inclusion
Meeting Room F

A major challenge to financial inclusion equity is the fact that most financial service providers believe providing women and men the same financial products and conducting the same credit analysis will lead to the same level of financial inclusion. As Women’s World Banking has proven through its work around the world over the past 45 years, different approaches and product design are required to reach low-income women customers. This workshop aims to strengthen the ability of FSPs to deliver appropriate, commercially viable women-centered financial products and services, allowing them to tap into a large, as-yet unserved target market. 

Facilitator:

Sharada Ramanathan - Lead Program Manager, Women’s World Banking 

Speakers:

Ker Thao - Design Specialist, Advisory Services, Women’s World Banking  

Rowena Reyes - Director, Sweef Capital  

16:10
17:10
FEATURED SESSION: Innovating for Climate Action: Women-Led Ventures Pitching Event
Conference Room 3

Moderator:  

Bettina Gamboa - Program Manager, Accelerating Asia Ventures

Entrepreneurs:

Joshita Sanjana Rizvan - Chief Business Officer, Nodes Digital Limited  

Jebunnahar Mishu - Co-Founder, Daily Goods Limited  

Natcha Lerthatasilp - CEO, Carbonwize 

Hira Javaid - Co-Founder, Foster Electric  

Nikhat Khan - Director, Pacific General Consultants  

Monica Carmeli "Mica" Martirez - Co-Founder and COO, Rezbin 

Marina Tran-Vu - Founder & CEO, EQUO  

Ankita Vijayvergiya - Co-Founder & CEO, BillionCarbon Solutions Private Limited  

Hang Nguyen Thi Thu - Co-Founder & Chairwoman, Wiibike Vietnam Join Stock Company  

Roikhanatun Nafi'ah - CEO & Founder, Crustea  

Lynay Horn - Founder, AETJAY App  

FEATURED SESSION: Mind the Gap: Intersectionality and Inclusive Finance for Women-led Entrepreneurship
Meeting Room F

This year’s Feminist Finance Forum will feature the Strategic Intelligence Hub session on ‘Mind the Gap: Inclusive Finance for Women-led Entrepreneurship’. Through presenting data-driven evidence and real-life success stories, the session aims to highlight the transformative power of inclusive finance in enabling young women entrepreneurs to thrive and contribute to sustainable development.    

Moderator:

Shamha Nasser - Youth Gender Strategy Development and Research Consultant, UNDP 

Speakers: 

Hester Spiegel-van den Steenhoven - Managing Director, Epic Angels

Archi Ananya - Impact and Partnership Manager, iFarmer

Keisha Gani - SHE Program Director, iDE Cambodia

 

 

17:10
18:10
FEATURED SESSION: Unpacking Bias in Investments for Women Entrepreneurs – A Fishbowl Conversation
Meeting Room H

This session will invite investors and women entrepreneurs to lead the conversation on tackling gender bias along the investment process, particularly when seeking venture capital funding. In the session, Value for Women (VfW) will present a short presentation on Mitigating Gender Bias within Investment Processes: A Toolkit for Venture Capital Investors developed for venture capital and early stage investors  (in association with UNESCAP) on tackling bias and subsequently, facilitate a discussion with investors and women founders on navigating bias and pain points along the funding process. Adopting a fishbowl format, the conversation will be anchored around three ‘key moments’ of a woman entrepreneur’s journey in fundraising: Preparing for investment, Identifying investors and Pitching for investment. 

Moderator:  

Luis Marquez - Director of Advisory Services, Value for Women  

Facilitator:  

Trina Roy - Senior Associate, Value for Women 

FEATURED SESSION Scaling the Orange Movement: Building a gender-inclusive financial system and catalyzing growth for women-focused SMEs
Conference Room 4

The session will feature the experiences of women-focused impact enterprises that have benefited from capital infusion. It will demonstrate how funding has facilitated their growth and how they have used data to refine their intervention strategies. The panel will also emphasize the importance of practitioners being accountable and employing data-driven approaches in allocating capital and resources. To propel informed decision making, the session will introduce IIX IntelligenceTM and the Orange Index, which aim to bridge data gaps in gender, climate, and DEI across the SME landscape in regional and country settings, giving stakeholders various lenses in which to base informed decision making. 

Moderator:  

Natasha Garcha - Senior Director, Innovative Finance and Gender-Lens Investing Specialist, IIX

Speakers:

Kathleen Bombell - Director, Gender Equality Branch, Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

Sara Saeed - Founder, Sehat Kahani

Yvonne Foo - Country Head, ANZ Thailand

16:10
18:10
Movie Screening: "Show Her The Money"
Theater
18:10
19:10
Reception
08 May 2024
08:30
09:30
PLENARY: Leadership to Transform Care: Making the Economy Work for Women
Conference Room 3

The discussion will explore the opportunities and entry points for governments, development finance institutions and the private sector to develop public-private financing models to transform the Care economy and achieve an inclusive and gender-equitable economy. The session is aimed at identifying government and private sector-led initiatives in Asia and the Pacific, that address the constraints in the supply and demand of Care services, from a women’s entrepreneurship and Care enterprises development perspective. 

MC:  

Sara Diaz - Gender and Coordination Specialist, ESCAP   

Speakers:  

Cai Cai - Chief Gender Equality and Social Inclusion, ESCAP   

Susan Ferguson - a.i Regional Director for UN Women Asia and the Pacific 

Flaubert Mbiekop - Senior Programme Specialist, IDRC  

Panel Moderator:

Katja Freiwald - Regional Lead, Women’s Economic Empowerment & Migration, UN Women  

Panelists:  

Keiko Nowacka - Principal Social Development (Gender and Development) Specialist, Asian Development Bank

Lok Nath Bhusal - Program Director, National Planning Commision, Government of Nepal  

Susan Nio - CEO, LoveCare   

Gaurav Mehta - CEO, Dharma Life 

 

09:30
10:30
Financing the Care Economy – South-South Learning Exchange 
Meeting Room H

The discussion will explore the existing and potential mechanisms for governments in Asia and the Pacific and Latin America and the Caribbean to finance comprehensive care systems that enable the provision of affordable and quality care services. The session is aimed at identifying, exploring synergies and exchanging learnings across the two regions on government-led initiatives and policies to finance care systems and invest in the care economy. 

Moderator:  

Cai Cai - Chief of Gender Equality and Social Inclusion, ESCAP   

Speakers:  

Maria Kristine Balmes - Deputy Executive Director, Philippine Commission on Women  

The Chhunhak - Director General, Gender Equality and Economic Development Ministry of Women Affairs, Cambodia

Rosa María Cañete - Director of Analysis for Poverty, Inequality and Culture, Ministry of Economy and Planning, Dominican Republic

Maesy Angelina - Director Policy and Reforms for Investing in Women, DFAT

Decoding the Nexus between Care Economy and Climate Change
Meeting Room F

The global imperative to address climate change through the transition to green solutions presents a unique opportunity to reimagine and restructure our economies in a way that also addresses deep-seated gender inequalities. Central to this transformation is recognizing the intricate link between women's economic empowerment (WEE), care work, and access to green solutions such as clean energy, particularly in low and middle-income countries (LMICs).

Moderator:  

Flaubert Mbiekop - Senior Programme Specialist, IDRC  

Speakers:  

Leah Anadon-Payud - Resilience Portfolio Manager, Oxfam  

Keiko Nowacka - Principal Social Development (Gender and Development) Specialist, Asian Development Bank   

Nalitra Thaiprasert - Economist, The Asia Foundation 

Helianti Hilman - Founder and Chairperson Javara  

10:30
11:30
PLENARY: Entrepreneurship to Transform the Care Economy: Asia-Pacific Care Accelerator Pitching Event
Conference Room 3

The Asia-Pacific Care Accelerator Pitching Event is the final event of the Gender-inclusive Care Entrepreneurship Ecosystem Programme’ (GICEEP). Following a virtual Demo Day in which all 12 enterprises will pitch, this event will feature the 6 Top Scoring enterprises to pitch their business solutions and demonstrate their current and future potential impact towards an inclusive care economy.

Moderators:  

Karina Bhasin - Program Lead, Asia-Pacific Care Accelerator, SAFEEM  

Amy Baum - International Consultant on WEE, WEPs & Entrepreneurship, UN Women  

Speakers 

Asia-Pacific Care Accelerator Cohort: Top 6 Scoring Enterprises (TBC on May 3) 

11:45
13:00
Championing Pension Funds for Gender Equality: Strategies, Experiences, and Institutional Buy-In
Meeting Room C+D

Across Asia, Gender Lens Investment (GLI) funds have cumulatively raised USD 1.3bn in capital across both private and public markets. There are also a growing number of gender-lens investment vehicles available for investors spanning almost all asset classes, across most countries in the region.This session aims to delve into the practical aspects of how pension funds can and are contributing to gender equality through gender lens investing. 

Moderator

Caitlin Medley - Senior Impact & Responsible Investment Executive, ex-QBE, ex-Prudential plc. and Director, Medley Impact

Speakers: 

Rasmus Juhl Pedersen - Head of ESG, Pædagogernes Pension
 
Robert van Zweiten - Founding Partner, Route17  
 
Jennifer Buckley - Managing Director, Sweef Capital 
Financing the Prevention of Gender-Based Violence
Meeting Room H

Gender-based violence (GBV) poses multiple risks—operational, regulatory, reputational, and political—to investments of all types. GBV is complex and investors often cite a lack of clarity about what data exist and how to use those data. Therefore, the design and implementations of financial solutions to advance social justice, gender equality, and socio-economic development goals are needed. The session will discuss the critical role that finance has as a tool to address GBV, and the importance of all actors in addressing the issue. 

Moderator: 

Joy Anderson - Founder and President, Criterion Institute 

Facilitators: 

Sanjana Chhantyal - Project Manager, Criterion Institute  

Mumtaz Aroos Faleel - Country Director, World University Service of Canada 

Sana Kapadia - Chief Catalyst, Heading for Change 

Mackenzie King - Regional Partnerships & Coordination Lead, Asia-Pacific, Impact Hub Network 

Dominique Roberts - Programme Manager, Criterion Institute

Jodi Smith - Founder and CEO, Matanataki Impact 

Hang Vu - Gender Lead, IFC

Financial Inclusion in the Digital Economy: Opportunities and Challenges for Women Entrepreneurs
Meeting Room F

In the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region, women micro-entrepreneurs contribute substantially to household income and well-being, their communities and the national economy. Yet they often times face greater barriers than men when it comes to accessing digital financial services, constraining their ability to thrive and scale their business in the digital economy. This session brings together women micro-entrepreneurs, policymakers, regulators, and the private sector to debate the solutions that could have the greatest potential to accelerate the digital and financial inclusion of Asia Pacific women micro-entrepreneurs in the digital economy. 

Facilitator:

Kal Joffres - CEO, Tandemic 

Speakers: 

Isabelle Carboni - Senior Director, Women in the Digital Economy Fund (WiDEF), GSMA  

Subhashini Chandran - Vice President, Social Impact, Asia Pacific, Mastercard Centre for Inclusive Growth  

Khowla Shoaib - Senior Vice President Strategy and Sustainability, Mobilink Microfinance Bank  

Maria Perdomo - Regional Manager for Asia and the Pacific, United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF)

Lennise Ng - Co-Founder and CEO, Borong

Mainstreaming Gender Transformative Climate Finance for NDC Implementation 
Conference Room 4

The mobilisation of finance and the involvement of financial institutions and private sector finance are important considerations/conditions driving the fulfillment of NDCs. NDCs lack action plans as well as concrete pathways to mobilise financing that are aligned to meet the emission reductions that are considered necessary to keep global warming below 2°C.

Moderator:  

Wilatluk Sinswat - Research Fellow, Stockholm Environment Institute

Speakers: 

Neha Khanna - Climate Policy Initiative, India  

Shreekant Gupta - Delhi School of Economics  

Ananya Chakraborty - World Resources Institute, India 

Vani Bharadwaj - Co-President, Society of Gender Professionals  

14:00
15:00
PLENARY: Leading the Charge: Women CEOs Driving Digital Inclusion and Empowerment
Conference Room 3

Women remain underrepresented and face systemic barriers in accessing digital technologies, employment and leadership roles in digital and tech industries. At the same time, the digital revolution presents a powerful opportunity to empower women economically and socially. This event aims to highlight the vital role of women tech leaders in spearheading solutions and setting a progressive agenda. This interactive roundtable will convene leading female CEOs, founders and leaders from the digital and technology sector to engage in a solutions-focused dialogue and co-create an action-oriented agenda to accelerate women's economic empowerment through digital inclusion - a critical enabler for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). 

Moderator:

Anita Roth - Former Director of Global Affairs and Strategic Partnerships, Airbnb

Speakers:

Aba Shubert - CEO and Co-Founder, Dorae   

Annabel Lee - Director of ASEAN and Digital Policy at AWS

Dinara Ruslan - CEO and Founder, Codify   

Nattinee Dora Sae Ho - CEO and Founder, Thrive Venture   

Methawee ‘June’ Thatsanasateankit - CEO Vulcan Coalition  

Rhea See - Co-Founder She Loves Tech   

Enkhjargal Natsagdor - Co-Founder and CEO of Gerege Systems LLC   

Michele Wee Sung San - CEO Standard Chartered Bank Viet Nam

15:15
17:00
CLOSING PLENARY: Pathways for Taking the Feminist Finance Agenda to the Next Level  
Conference Room 3

Moderators:  

Jonathan Wong - Chief of Innovation, Enterprise and Investment, ESCAP  

Kalanga Joffres - CEO Tandemic  

 

Speakers:    

H.E. Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana - Executive Secretary, ESCAP   

Hon. Lynda Tabuya - Minister of Women, Children and Social Protection, Fiji

Joy Anderson - Founder and President, Criterion Institute

Keiko Nowacka - Principal Social Development (Gender and Development) Specialist, Asian Development Bank

Alisa Sivathorn - Disability Inclusion and Empowerment Specialist, UNDP

Sana Kapadia - Chief Catalyst, Heading for Change

08 May 2024
17:00
18:30
Reception
General

The United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) is hosting its second edition of the Feminist Finance Forum in Bangkok, Thailand from 7 – 8 May 2024. The in-person Forum will convene women entrepreneurs, investors, financial service providers, policymakers, thought leaders, ecosystem enablers, representatives from civil society and women grassroots organizations, and academia. The interactive event will include a diverse mix of plenaries, concurrent sessions, as well as side-events and networking spaces.  

 

The Forum will allow participants to: 

  • Expand their networks of women entrepreneurs, investors, financial service providers, policymakers, and other ecosystem actors.
  • Learn from and share experiences, tools and opportunities for improving gender-responsive financing in Asia and the Pacific with leaders in this field.  
  • Contribute to tangible outcomes, meaningful actions, and a regional vision for closing the gender finance gap in Asia and the Pacific.

 

The objective of the Forum is to foster meaningful dialogue and generate concrete action towards closing the gender-finance gap in Asia and the Pacific.

In line with the UN’s commitment to sustainability, we encourage participants at the Forum to bring their own reusable water bottles. There will be water filling stations provided on-site.

Credentials

 

 

Registration and identification badges

All participants are required to complete the online registration at https://indico.un.org/event/1009674/ no later than 23 April  2024.

 

Please note that prior online registration is mandatory in line with standard security procedures to facilitate security clearance and entrance to the premises. Only duly registered participants will be permitted to attend the sessions.

 

Participants registered online can obtain photo badges at the registration counter, located on the Ground Level, UNCC, from 08:00 to 10:00 hours on the session's opening day.

 

Participants who are not able to register online during these times or who are facing any difficulties with the portal can contact Ms. Phadnalin Ngernlim at <[email protected]>.

 

For identification and security reasons, all participants are REQUIRED to always wear their meeting badges while they are in the UN complex, which applies to meetings and social functions. The loss of a meeting badge should be immediately communicated to the registration counter or the UN security, so that the incident can be recorded, and a new badge can be issued.

Communications

For substantive issues please contact:

Ms. Maria Victoria Baldaccini (email: [email protected]with Ms. Zhanna Tlegenova (email: [email protected]) in copy.

 

We welcome and strongly encourage the invited guests to amplify the visibility of the forum through their networks, to share key messages from the dialogue, drive momentum towards feminist financing, and broaden the reach of our shared mission. Additional guidelines and details will be shared, including visibility materials for this event to promote collaborative social media outreach. 

For any questions regarding Communications, please contact Ms. Christina Morrison ([email protected]), with copy to Ms. Vineeta Rana ([email protected]).

 

Meeting documents

The secretariat has adopted a paperless approach to meetings. As a result, participants are expected to get acquainted with all the meeting documents prior to the meeting. Should participants wish hard copies of the documents, they are expected to bring them to the meeting. 

Participants wishing to circulate any papers or literature at the meeting are requested to consult staff from the secretariat servicing the meeting for the necessary arrangements.

Daily subsistence allowance

Applicable to sponsored participants only.

Health and vaccination Health and vaccination

Upon arrival at the port of entry in Thailand, participants who are nationals of or have traveled from/through countries listed below, which have been declared Yellow Fever infected areas, must provide an International Health Certificate proving that they have received a valid Yellow Fever vaccination at the Health Control Office upon arrival before proceeding to immigration. A valid vaccination certificate means that the vaccine was administered at least 10 days prior to travel to the affected country. The International Health Certificate must also be submitted together with the visa application form.

The countries/areas listed below have been declared yellow fever infected areas (Source: Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Thailand dated 30 November 2022):

  1. Angola
  2. Argentina
  3. Benin
  4. Bolivia
  5. Brazil
  6. Burkina Faso
  7. Burundi
  8. Cameroon
  9. Central African Republic
  10. Chad
  11. Colombia
  12. Congo
  13. Republic of the Congo
  14. Cote d’Ivoire
  15. Ecuador
  16. Equatorial Guinea
  17. Ethiopia
  18. French Guiana
  19. Gabon
  20. Gambia
  21. Ghana
  22. Guinea
  23. Guinea-Bissau
  1. Guyana
  2. Kenya
  3. Liberia
  4. Mali
  5. Mauritania
  6. Niger
  7. Nigeria
  8. Panama
  9. Paraguay
  10. Peru
  11. Rwanda
  12. Sao Tome & Principe
  13. Senegal
  14. Sierra Leone
  15. Somalia
  16. Sudan
  17. Suriname
  18. Tanzania
  19. Togo
  20. Trinidad & Tobago
  21. Uganda
  22. Venezuela

Zika virus

Zika is endemic in Thailand and cases have been reported amongst tourists. All travelers are advised to protect themselves from mosquito bites while in Thailand. Given possible transmission of the disease to unborn babies, pregnant women should consider postponing travel to Thailand or talk to their doctor about the implications of traveling to Thailand during this time.

In addition to the above, Medical Services Division at UNHQs advises that pregnant UN personnel should not undertake duty travel or be relocated to countries/areas where local transmission of Zika virus is known to occur. Women who are seeking pregnancy should obtain individual advice from their medical practitioner on risk management regarding their plans to travel into a Zika-affected area. For further information, please refer to the Zika virus FAQ.

Information on other non-vaccine preventable diseases to watch out for while in Thailand can be found here: Thailand - Traveler view | Travelers' Health | CDC.

Air pollution and Health

Bangkok, like many metropolitan Asian cities in the world, is periodically affected by high levels of air pollution, with haze and high concentrations of PM2.5 particularly of concern for sensitive groups.

The Tourism Authority of Thailand advises tourists to monitor Bangkok’s air pollution and take precautions when necessary. People who have existing asthma or are particularly vulnerable to the effects of air pollution should consult their treating physician as to whether a trip to Bangkok is advisable at this time. Information on the Air pollution can be found Air4Thai website, maintained by the government of Thailand with daily information on air pollution.

Insurance and emergency medical service

Delegates are strongly encouraged to subscribe to a travel or health insurance which is valid in the Kingdom of Thailand, in order to cover any medical bills or hospitalization fees. In case of medical emergency, please call 1669. The nearest hospital to the UNCC is Bangkok Adventist (Mission) Hospital, which has English speaking medical support staff +662-282-1100.

When feeling unwell while in the UNCC: Anyone who feels unwell while already within the UNCC is advised to call any medical service staff at +66 2288 1352/1353/1761 during business hours, for further guidance. After business hours, they are advised to call the UN Medical Officer at +66 2288 1353 for further guidance. In case of a medical emergency within the UNCC, they are advised to call UN Security at +66 2288 1102/1120 for assistance in calling an ambulance.

Visa requirements Visa and entry requirements

Visa Requirements

Participants are REQUIRED to obtain an appropriate entry visa from the Royal Thai Embassy or the Royal Thai Consulate-General before entering Thailand, EXCEPT for those nationals listed at List of Countries entitled for Visa Exemption and Visa on Arrival.

Please note that participants holding UN Laissez-Passer (UNLP) travelling on official business to Thailand are also REQUIRED to obtain an appropriate visa before entering.

To apply for an appropriate entry visa to Thailand, participants are required to contact their nearest Royal Thai Embassy or Consulate-General for the most updated information regarding visa application procedures and required documents. The list of Royal Thai Embassy/Consulate-General can be found at https://www.thaiembassy.org.

Participants who wish to apply for a visa outside their country of residence or reside in a country where there is no Royal Thai Embassy or Consulate, should check with the meeting organizer for the location where it is possible for them to apply for a Thai visa. Please note that certain nationalities, for security reasons, are not allowed to apply for a visa except at the Royal Thai Embassy or Consulate-General which has jurisdiction over the concerned territory.

Participants who may need further assistance from ESCAP on their visa application should contact the meeting organizer, well in advance, for necessary action.

Participants who wish to apply for a visa on arrival at Suvarnabhumi International Airport or Don Muang International Airport should follow the below requirements:

  1. The applicant must possess a passport from the list of countries whose nationals are eligible to apply for visa on arrival (List of countries entitled for Visa on Arrival) with the validity of more than 30 days, at least one completely blank page, and be in possession of a valid return ticket with date of departure within 15 days of the date of entry.
  2. The applicant must fill out an application form, which is available at the Visa-on-Arrival counter at the airport, supply one recent passport-sized photograph and a fee of Thai Baht (THB) 2,000.
  3. QR code for online application is available at Visa On Arrival (immigration.go.th). Upon presentation of printed Transaction Reference Number, the applicant could obtain the visa at the Visa-on-Arrival counter at the airport before proceeding for immigration procedures.
  4. The applicant must provide proof of means of living expenses at the amount of THB 10,000 per person or THB 20,000 per family.

NOTE: The information provided above is accurate as of October 2022.

Entry Requirements (as of 1 March 2023)

Thai Department of Disease Control (DDC), Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) issued “Public Health Measures for Foreign Travellers Entering Thailand”, which is effective from 1 March 2023 until further notice, as per the following:

  • Proof of vaccination is No longer required.
  • Proof of health insurance is No longer required.
  • Any passenger having symptoms of COVID-19 on arrival shall be recommended to get COVID-19/RT-PCR test at arrival.

For more information, travelers can contact the DDC Hotline 1422.

Accessibility support for persons with disabilities Accessibility support for persons with disabilities

The UNCC is fully wheelchair-accessible and houses the Accessibility Centre on Level 1. For more information, please visit the Accessibility Centre’s webpages

Travel agent Travel agent

The American Express Global Business Travel (AMEX-GBT) office is located on Level 1, UNCC, and is open weekdays from 08:00 to 17:00 hours. Remote support is available on other days ([email protected])

Transport to attend meetings Transport to attend meetings

Participants need to make their own transport arrangements to and from the UNCC. Metered taxis are readily available in the city and you may also book your transportation via applications such as Grab and Volt. Some hotels close to the UN building may provide complimentary transfer service on fixed schedule, to and from the UNCC, so please check with the hotel concierge.

Transport from and to Airport Transport from and to Airport

Participants need to make their own transportation arrangements from Suvarnabhumi International Airport or Don Mueang International Airport to their respective hotels. For the Airport Rail Link, an express and commuter rail connecting to Makkasan Station (MRT subway Petchaburi Station) and Phayathai Station (BTS Skytrain), passengers should go to Level B. Detailed information can be found at https://www.srtet.co.th/index.php/en/.

Electric taxis (EVsociety/VIP) are currently available at the Suvarnabhumi International Airport. The counter is located next to the main taxi area. The service is available 24 hours and can be pre-booked via:

Line ID: @evsociety
Phone: +66 2039 8888
Email: [email protected]
EV Society Facebook

Metered-taxi and bus services are readily available at the airport. More information is available at https://www.bangkokairportonline.com

To use the airport limousine service, participants should only contact the authorized officials at the counters located in the airport arrival zone. These officials will issue a ticket for the assignment of a limousine for transporting passengers to the desired destination, upon request. The Suvarnabhumi International Airport limousine service counters are located on Level 2 at Baggage Claim and Arrival Hall exits, channels A, B and C.

For public taxis, participants are advised to proceed to the Level 1 of the Passenger Terminal, between exit doors 4 and 7, outdoor area, where they will find automatic dispensing machines from which they can collect a queuing ticket for a public taxi. In addition to toll fees, there is a THB 50 surcharge to be added to the meter charge from the airport to the city. Please refer to the airport website noted above for details.

Safety and Security Safety and Security

For security and safety reasons, participants are reminded NOT to leave their belongings unattended. Belongings left unattended within the UNCC may be removed to the nearest Lost and Found counter or the Security Operations Centre.

All drone unmanned aircrafts are prohibited from flying over the UNCC as per the security requirements.

All occupants of the UNCC MUST comply at all times with all lawful directions given by the officers of the United Nations Security and Safety Section. Failure to do so may lead to the participant’s removal from the UNCC.

Contact numbers:

UN Security
Security Control Centre (24/7): +66.2.2881102
UN Security Emergency Number: +66.2.2881100
Mobile +66.81.8078471

Thailand Emergency Numbers:
Police general emergency call: 191
Fire: 199
Ambulance and rescue: 1669/1554
Tourism Police: 1155

Zero Tolerance towards harassment

The United Nations has a zero-tolerance policy for any form of harassment, including sexual harassment, and will deal with such complaints promptly. Please refer to the United Nations Code of Conduct and report any incident to the Security and Safety Section either in person or by phone at +66 2288 1102.

Security protocols for UN personnel

In line with security procedures for UN staff, travel notification through the Travel Request Information Process (TRIP) is required prior to any official travel. Upon notification of travel on TRIP, UN staff members will automatically receive an updated security advice for UN visitors to Thailand. Please visit https://dss.un.org to apply for this travel notification.

In addition, the UN Department of Safety and Security requires all UN personnel, including interns and consultants, to complete the mandatory BSAFE Security Awareness Training These security certifications are required to be completed, prior to having commenced official travel.

Prayer and meditation rooms Prayer and meditation rooms

Prayer and meditation rooms are located near CR2 on Level 2, UNCC.

Airline reservations Airline reservations

Many international airlines operate regular services to and from Bangkok. Participants are advised to secure their return bookings prior to their departure for Bangkok. If this is not possible, they should make firm return bookings immediately upon arrival in Bangkok. Travel services are available through the American Express Global Business Travel (AMEX-GBT) office located on Level 1, UNCC.

Library facilities Library facilities

ESCAP Library facilities are available on Level 1, Service Building from 08:00 to 16:00 hours, Monday through Friday. For details on the use of the ESCAP Library facilities, please consult the staff on duty or call extensions 1329 and 1360. Further information about the ESCAP Library can be found on its website at http://www.unescap.org/library.

Internet services Internet services

Free wireless internet access is available in all conference and meeting rooms and in the public areas of the UNCC. Please use UN-WiFi, no password is required. Use of internet at UNCC is governed by relevant Organizational policies and guidelines. Failure to adhere to policies may result in revoking of those services.

Hotel accommodation Hotel accommodation

Hotels, located relatively close to ESCAP or by mass-transit routes, may be used by participants, should they choose to. The selection of hotels at a walking distance from the UNCC is encouraged to reduce participants’ local travel emissions and their exposure to traffic. Click here for a list of hotels, with indicative prices.

NOTE: ESCAP cannot vouch for accuracy of the information or rates contained in the document. The list is meant purely for reference and for ease of participants. The special discount rates provided are subject to change without notice. Please confirm the room rates with the hotel directly.

Participants are responsible for booking their own rooms and are requested to contact the hotel well in advance. Any cancellations, postponements or other changes should be reported to the hotel. Rooms not occupied may be charged to the participants as per the hotel’s policies.

Before departure from Bangkok, participants should settle directly with the respective hotels all accounts, including room charges and other expenses, such as for local and long-distance telephone calls, Internet usage, business center usage, laundry, room and hotel transportation services, mini-bar items, as well as restaurant and bar services. Participants are also responsible for any charges incurred with respect to rooms remaining vacant owing to late arrival or rescheduled departure for which inadequate prior notice is given.

Foreign currency declaration Foreign currency declaration

Any person who brings or takes an aggregate amount of foreign currency exceeding USD 20,000 or its equivalent into or out of the Kingdom of Thailand shall declare such amount of foreign currency to a Customs Official. Failure to make such a declaration or making any false declaration to a Customs official is a criminal offence.

For reference, participants may use – at their discretion – online currency conversion tool, such as https://freecurrencyrates.com for indicative currency conversion rates.

Floor plans UNCC Floor plans

The UNCC floor plans are available at https://www.unescap.org/uncc/our-rooms. The UN buildings are smoke-free. Smoking is permitted only in the designated areas outside of the buildings and in the UNCC, the designated smoking area is outside of the Public Foyer.

Financial & administrative arrangements Financial & administrative arrangements

In those cases where the participation costs are borne by the ESCAP Secretariat, the Secretariat will provide only travel and DSA as expressed and will not assume responsibility for any other expenditure, including the following:

  1. All expenses in the home country incidental to travel abroad, including expenditure for visa, medical examination, inoculations and other such miscellaneous items and internal travel to and from the airport of arrival and departure in the home country;
  2. Salary and related allowances for the participants during the period of the meeting;
  3. Costs incurred by participants in respect of travel insurance, accident insurance, medical bills or hospitalization fees in connection with attending the meeting;
  4. Compensation in the event of death or disability of participants in connection with attending the meeting;
  5. Any loss of or damage to personal property of participants while attending the meeting or losses or damages claimed by third parties as a result of any negligence on the part of the participants;
  6. Any other expenses of a personal nature, not directly related to the purpose of the meeting.
Electric plug and socket Electric plug and socket

The electric power in Thailand is 220V running at 50Hz and the plug types used are either Type A, Type B, or Type C. A hybrid socket is almost universally found, which accepts a combination of the above plug types.

Delegates are strongly encouraged to carry their own adapters for use with laptops and other electrical appliances as the Secretariat will not be able to provide these. In case of need, adapters can be purchased from shops in the city dealing in electronic and electrical items.

Catering services Catering services

Operating hours

Catering services are available at the following locations:

  • International Cafeteria (Level 1, UNCC), which serves breakfast from 7.30 to 10.00 hours, and Thai, Halal and International menus for lunch from 11:00 to 14:00 hours on Monday through Friday.
  • Coffee Corner (Level 1, UNCC), which serves assortment of bakery pastries and beverages, is open from 07:00 to 17:00 hours on Monday through Friday.
  • Rajapruek Lounge (Ground Level, UNCC), which serves light meals and beverages, is open from 07:00 to 17:00 hours on Monday through Friday.

In line with the Sustainable United Nations (SUN) and Environmental Management System (EMS} principles, no single use plastic is available in the UNCC. Single-use food and drink containers have been banned within the UN compound in Bangkok. When purchasing coffee/tea at the Coffee Corner, meeting participants will be asked to pay a deposit of THB 100 for a cup, which will be returned upon return of the cup.

Dining venues at the UNCC also do not provide food storage boxes, plastic cutlery or straws for take-away orders. Diners wishing to take food away are advised to bring their own reusable food containers.

Banking facilities Banking facilities

Banking services are available at the Siam Commercial Bank, United Nations Branch, located on Level 1 of the Service Building, from 08:30 to 15:30 hours during weekdays. (telephone extension 2168).

Siam Commercial Bank ATMs can be found near the registration desk, on the Ground Level of UNCC, and near its UN Branch office, noted above.

Weather Weather

The weather in Bangkok is usually warm and humid. Light tropical clothing would be appropriate. The conference and meeting rooms at the UNCC are air-conditioned and the temperature is maintained in the range of 23-24 degrees Celsius (73-75 degrees Fahrenheit).

for more information, please contact

Trade, Investment and Innovation Division +66 2 288-1234 [email protected]
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