Strategic planning and effective cooperation can help ensure that good intentions are translated into concrete actions. The National Confederation for Female Entrepreneurship (CONAF) in Romania aims to achieve precisely this. Established in November 2018, CONAF is developing a plan of action designed to promote and defend the economic rights and interests of businesswomen.

A unified mission
CONAF provides unified representation for its members – employer federations that promote and support female entrepreneurship. Collaborative agreements have also been signed with business federations in Moldova, Hungary and Finland.

More specifically, CONAF’S objectives include:
•    promoting Romania’s economic interests abroad
•    protecting the interests of entrepreneurs at the local, regional, national and international level
•    increasing the visibility of the organisation and giving a unified voice to female entrepreneurs
•    encouraging the involvement of Romanian businesses in social dialogue committees
•    improving the legislative framework to stimulate growth and forming strategic partnerships with other confederations
Central to CONAF’s aim is ensuring that the activities of central and local public authorities, trade unions and other non-governmental organisations are constructive and conducive to the interests of female entrepreneurs.

Benefits of cooperation
The confederation provides members with useful information on sources of funding, ongoing programmes and how to apply. Fairs and exhibitions are also planned to bring members into contact with potential partners and clients. While missions abroad are foreseen to help to broaden the horizon of opportunities for Romanian businesswomen.

CONAF also ensures the representation of entrepreneurs’ interests through working closely with relevant ministries and helps to raise awareness of entrepreneurship issues at the level of policy makers. The organisation is also on the lookout for transferrable good practices and lessons from similar federations around the world. Cristina Chiriac, President of the National Entrepreneurs Association and the driving force behind CONAF, believes this new cooperative approach will greatly benefit Romanian businesswomen and motivate more entrepreneurs to get involved.