Asia Pacific nations pledge to advance women’s economic empowerment
Asia Pacific countries are committed to advancing policies and initiatives that promote an inclusive, equitable and sustainable recovery from the pandemic, as well as greater economic empowerment for women.
Speaking at the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Women and Economy Forum, Chuti Krairiksh, Thailand’s Minister of Social Development and Human Security, said, “All challenges should be and can be transformed into opportunities. Gender perspectives must be mainstreamed into our respective policies, action plans, and budgets.
“Importantly, all these policies, plans and budgets must be approved and implemented so that the needs of women and girls of diverse backgrounds will be addressed, and [ensure] that women and girls will have equal opportunity and equitable access to capital and markets, labour force participation, leadership positions, education and digital skills training in a changing world.”
Member economies should also create “an enabling environment that promotes inclusive development and empowerment of all women”, said the minister, adding that strengthening collaboration and networks are key to providing a supportive environment.
“Women often have that difficult choice of advancing their career and balancing it with what they see as family duties, and that continues to be the greatest barrier to advancement,” he said, according to Antara.
Policies that cover child benefits, paid or unpaid leave, and getting men to shoulder their share of responsibilities in unpaid and domestic work should be prioritised, he highlighted.