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A German-Kosovar partnership opens the perspective for almost 500 women

Jan 18, 2018

Metije Maliqi, a 37-year-old woman from Goshica, in the Municipality of Vitia, wanted to become independent and advance professionally from a very young age. Although she had no higher education she invested in herself in two ways: professionally by perfecting her tailoring skills and personally as a woman engaging in different activities for women’s rights.

She started a tailoring course and thanks to her good performance, she has been working as a trainer for three years in a row. With only one sewing machine, she managed to run a clothing boutique from which she made a profit for many years. Married in a village of Kamenica eight years now, she was forced to close her boutique and dedicate herself to creating a family and raising children.

Her situation changed when she received the news that a textile factory was opening in her hometown, and would possibly provide for employment for many women.

“My tailoring experience provided me with a job in this factory. By doing this job I will go back to my ideal of an independent and hard-working woman,” she says.

This new textile factory “Vitex” in Vitia is a partnership between the German company “Wenger Industrie Consulting GBH” who invested 51% of shares, whereas 49% shares belong to a local entrepreneur. The factory will produce pants; women’s blazers, women’s skirts, jeans and men’s suits, and all production will be exported to Germany.

The factory has received support in several forms, especially during its training period, by the Swiss organization “Helvetas Swiss Intercooperation,” the German Agency for International Cooperation “Deutsche Geselleschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH” (GIZ) and the Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare.

Haqif Ibrahimi, one of the investors in this factory, explains the procedure of the work done in the factory.

“Now everything is ready to train employees accepted. The ratio between women and men is 90% to 10%. The training starts on the 13th of this month (July 2017) and will last up to three months,” Ibrahimi says.

According to him, the number of the employees is expected to increase starting from September, right after training finishes and “for a short period, the number of employees with reach 500.”

He expresses his gratitude to the mayor of Vitia, Sokol Haliti, who was a mediator in the implementation of this project.

“All this started at a fair for foreign investors by the Ministry of Trade and Industry, where the mayor of our municipality, Sokol Haliti, presented as well.  He told us of the good opportunities Vitia offers for investment and brought us for a visit at the municipality,” he says.

For the mayor of the municipality, this is one of the biggest investments in the field of employment Vitia. The municipality, according to Haliti, has paid attention the process of work in the factory and was ready to continue helping where needed in order for the factory to start running as soon as possible.

“We as a municipality will do everything to attract as many foreign investors as possible and introduce them to the favorable conditions the municipality of Vitia offers for several investments. This time, we are talking about the employment of 500 families and this is a great achievement of the municipality of Vitia,” he says.

Fitore Bajrami, an official from the German organization GIZ, asserts that they were notified by their German partner for this German-Kosovar investment, and they valued it as a real opportunity for employment.

“Opening new jobs for everyone, specifically for the youth, women and the returnees remains a priority to us,” she says.

Bajrami gives emphasis to the excellent cooperation with the municipality of Vitia, which has gone on for years.

“It is also one of the municipalities with a tradition in textile and the new generations have an opportunity to train in this field through the professional school where they can attend the department of textile.”

In the activity supported by GIZ, 150 Vitia`s citizens will get trained.

Leonora Rahimi, a lawyer by profession, always had a talent and a passion for tailoring. This merging of two professions, what may look strange at first sight, is giving her a double chance for employment in this factory.

“I worked in tailoring for four years, and I finished my law studies two years ago. I kept tailoring since I did not get a chance to work in my profession,” Rahimi says.

She started tailoring in this factory but hopes that soon, when the factory becomes fully functional, she will have the opportunity to become its lawyer, which she would be very happy for.

Trëndelinë Haliti

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