Bangladesh tops in South Asia in gender equality

Gender inequality widening after decade of progress WEF
World Economic Forum: Women will cover gender pay gap in two centuries

04 November, 2017

It has also moved 25 notches up in the Global Gender Gap Report 2017 published by the World Economic Forum (WEF) on Thursday. This includes some nations that aren't generally thought of as bastions of equality: Although Belarus and Rwanda are both authoritarian dictatorships, for instance, each of them nevertheless placed in the top 10 nations in terms of economic gender parity, according to the World Economic Forum's report.

The most improved countries were Bulgaria, which jumped 23 spots to 18, and Canada, which jumped 19 spots to 16.

Behind the decline is mainly a widening of the gender gap across Economic Opportunity and Political Empowerment.

The World Economic Forum Global Gender Gap Report 2017 showed that Sri Lanka has been slipping from its privileged position in the top 20 since 2010.

Four Arab countries ranked among the lowest-performing due to neglecting the political empowerment of women, including Kuwait (129), Qatar (130) Lebanon (137), and Yemen (144).

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Gender Gap report, the gender gaps at the industry level highlights that even though qualified women are coming out of the education system, many industries are failing to hire, retain and promote them. And pointing to the obvious in the subindex for "Years with a female head of state", the report notes that Morocco has made zero progress.

Twenty-seven countries around the world increased gender equality in the field of education compared to 24 countries in 2016, and 34 countries increased gender equality in the field of health and survival compared to 38 countries in 2016.

In comparison, the US ranks 49th, with only 72 percent of its gap closed.

The Global Gender Gap Index was first introduced by the WEF in 2006 as a framework for capturing the magnitude of gender-based disparities and tracking their progress over time. "Gender parity is shifting into reverse this year for the first time since the World Economic Forum started measuring it", writes Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman for the World Economic Forum. According to their findings, gender equality does not come about of its own accord, requiring "the collective action and solidarity of women human rights defenders, political will, and tools such as legislation, gender budgeting and quotas".

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