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Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP) in collaboration with Cheezmall held an exhibition of handicrafts made by BISP beneficiaries for their encouragement and open new doors for their products. Speaking at the inaugural ceremony, chairperson BISP, Marvi Memon said investing in women’s economic empowerment sets a direct path towards poverty alleviation and financial inclusiveness. “BISP is a social safety net that not only lends a hand in poverty management but endeavours to harness entrepreneurial potential of its beneficiaries by marketing the products of beneficiaries so that they may graduate out of poverty”, she stated.

She said this was a historic beginning which will change the lives of the poorest women of Pakistan. Marvi Memon reiterated that through BISP E-Commerce, the products of beneficiaries are already available online giving international recognition to the traditional products of the country. She further added that market access to the handicrafts of marginalized segments would contribute in their financial empowerment. The exhibition was held through mutual collaboration of BISP and Cheezmall at Darbar Hotel Ground, Karimabad, Hunza.

Cheezmall, originating from China, is an online shopping website created by professionals of E-Commerce who have past experience of managing and running Alibaba, a global leader in the field. In order to replicate the successful model of Alibaba, Cheezmall utilizes expertise of Alibaba for training of their managers. It started its operation in Pakistan last year. The collaboration between BISP and Cheezmall, entering into its pilot phase in seven districts of the country, one in each province and territory.

Starting from Gilgit Baltistan Hunza, aims at online promotion and sale of BISP beneficiaries’ products at international level. Cheezmall deals directly with the beneficiaries for purchase of products; BISP being only the facilitator. The event was marked by the presence of minister of State/ Chairperson BISP, Deputy Speaker Gilgit Baltistan Assembly Jafarullah Khan, Senior Minister Dr. Mohammad Iqbal, Gilgit Baltistan local politicians, Director Cheezmall Ghazanfar Ali Khan, large number of beneficiaries and local public.

During the exhibition, BISP beneficiaries showcased a large variety of products which were purchased by Cheezmall immediately and visitors and on spot payments were made to beneficiaries. Products worth approximately half million rupees were purchased by Cheezmall which would further market the products bought on their website to ensure international and national sales. The visitors took great interest in the wide range of exhibited products that included caps, shoulder bags, wall hangings, wallets, key chain, door bells, pouches, cushion covers, wooden products, carpets, jewelry items, gems, shawls, local dresses and shoes.

Director Cheezmall Ghazanfer presenting the message of Cheezmall on behalf of Chief Executive Officer Aurangzeb Khan and Co-founders Wang Qu and Lichenglong, said Cheezmall was highly interested in promoting and maximizing the profits for the products of poverty ridden BISP beneficiaries. He added that this exhibition was a first step towards long term cooperation between BISP and Cheezmall focusing on the betterment of the poor beneficiaries in all provinces of Pakistan.—APP

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