Eco­nomic gen­der gap may take 170 years to close

The Myanmar Times - - International Business -

THE eco­nomic gen­der gap could take 170 years to close after progress to­wards par­ity be­tween the sexes suf­fered “a dra­matic slow­down”, the World Eco­nomic Fo­rum (WEF) said.

De­spite the fact women have made ma­jor gains in ed­u­ca­tional achieve­ment – catch­ing or sur­pass­ing men in 95 coun­tries – women still earn less in ex­change for longer hours, are less likely to have a job, and are far less likely to have a se­nior or man­age­rial post, the re­port said.

The Geneva-based WEF has tracked the dis­par­i­ties be­tween the sexes since 2006 in four ar­eas: ed­u­ca­tion, health, eco­nomic op­por­tu­nity and po­lit­i­cal em­pow­er­ment.

Eco­nomics was the only area where progress was be­ing re­versed, said the WEF, which is best known for the an­nual gath­er­ing of politi­cians and busi­ness lead­ers in the Swiss alpine re­sort town of Davos.

“Progress to­wards par­ity in the key eco­nomic pil­lar has slowed dra­mat­i­cally with the gap – which stands at 59 per­cent – now larger than at any point since 2008,” the WEF re­port said.

Western Europe, “could ex­pect to close its gen­der gap within 47 years”, while in South Asia it could take more than 1000 years “un­less ef­forts are ac­cel­er­ated,” the WEF said.

Over­all, Nordic coun­tries dom­i­nated the top of the ta­ble for gen­der par­ity: Men and women were most equal in Ice­land fol­lowed by Fin­land, Nor­way and Swe­den. –

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