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Panama woman wins 2012 Empretec Women in Business Award

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Ms Melissa De León, founder of Panama Gourmet, a company which produces gluten-free foods, has won the 2012 Empretec Women in Business Award, the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) has announced.

The prize honours businesswomen from developing countries who have founded successful firms, created jobs, and become role models in their communities.

The award was announced at a gala dinner that was the culmination of a “Women in Development Day” staged on the third day of the recently-held UNCTAD XIII quadrennial conference in Doha, Qatar.

The second prize went to Patricia Paz Silva Giordani of Brazil, who founded the firm Moura e Paz – Soluções Ambientais, which provides safe transport and treatment of dangerous industrial and medical waste for business clients in one of the poorest states in Brazil.

Third place was won by Rahda Kurdi of Jordan. Her company, Advanced Pharmaceutical Services, works as an association providing economies of scale to small pharmaceutical businesses so that they may compete with the large chains in the Jordanian pharmacy sector.

All the ten finalists for the awards were graduates of the Empretec programme, which offers training in entrepreneurship through centres in 33 countries.

By Ekow Quandzie

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