/ Business meets politics

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// We urgently need more women in leadership positions.

- Bettina Stark-Watzinger

What do female entrepreneurs want from our policymakers

What is it like to be a female entrepreneur in the coronavirus pandemic? What challenges do female entrepreneurs currently face and how can the political community support them? The Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom considered these key questions on 23 November at an event hosted in collaboration with the Association of German Women Entrepreneurs (VdU). The two Bundestag MPs Bettina Stark-Watzinger (Free Democrats) and Marie-Luise Dött (CDU/CSU) emphasised that government aid shouldn’t be ‘showered’ on everyone, but distributed on a sector-specific basis. Bettina Stark-Watzinger believes that the measures taken should reflect the complexities of our economy. Berlin retailer Liliana Cataldo said that one of the biggest challenges her sector is facing is not being able to make long-term plans or investments. Another problem is the inconsistency of government communications, which are causing frustration and a lack of understanding in some sections of the population.

Stephanie Bschorr, tax advisor and former VdU President, appealed for a ‘change of culture’ in Germany. As a result of the coronavirus crisis women find themselves in a situation that has ‘turned the clock back a few decades’ because, in most cases, they are the ones who have taken on the jobs of home schooling and caring for relatives. What we need are targeted measures to ensure a healthy work-life balance, such as a new tax model or a child benefit reform, as well as financial incentives for women to continue working.

All the panellists agreed that the insights we have gained during the crisis, and the progress we have achieved in the digital transformation, should be viewed as an opportunity to continue driving long-term digital structural change in Germany.