March is a great month for so many reasons – we move our clocks forward resulting in an extra hour of sunlight and the anticipation of the coming summer months. It’s also the month we celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, National Panda Day and the Spring Equinox. While all of this is true, March has a different meaning to the billions of women around the world.
Here in the United States, March is Women’s History Month celebrating the contributions and achievements of Women in the United States. Internationally, March 8th is regarded as International Women’s day, celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women around the world.  The day also serves as a call to action for women’s equality.  As such, we are highlighting female participation in international trade, and the need for more participation by women around the world.
International trade is a field typically dominated by men, only 20% of all exporting companies across the globe are owned by women. Women-owned businesses that export are 1.2 times more productive on average than their male owned counterparts. 
Aside from increased productivity, women in trade have had far reaching effects on the global economy. Women-owned businesses engaged in export activities pay better, are more productive and employ more people on average than firms that do not export.  This has led to improved well-being of children, poverty reduction and economic growth. Women owned companies typically employ more women than their male owned counterparts, contributing to continued female empowerment. This is true of TradeMoves, 75% of the employees are women.
In acknowledgement of the benefits women bring to the industry, in 2017 the WTO endorsed an initiative to increase female participation in trade.  The initiative is aimed at creating new opportunities for women by creating policies that increase market access for women, which will in turn improve economic efficiency, poverty reduction and economic growth.
Below are some resources to help women succeed in the field of international trade:
 March is Women’s History Month, Accessed 16 March, 2021 https://womenshistorymonth.gov/about/
 International Women’s Day, Accessed 16 March, 2021 https://www.internationalwomensday.com/About