Gender Equality Still Lags Behind for Asia-Pacific Women
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Gender inequality remains a large barrier to economic and social development in the Asia-Pacific region, a United Nations report said. UN Deputy Country Director Napolean Navarro presented the latest United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) report in Beijing Tuesday to commemorate International Women's Day.
|UNDP launches 2010 Asia-Pacific Regional Human Development Reports on March 9, 2010 in Beijing. [China.org.cn]
"Empowering women is vital for achieving development goals overall, and for boosting economic growth and sustainable development," Navarro said. "Policy needs to advance gender equality so that women, as well as men, can benefit from job creation and investment in social infrastructure."
While Asian-Pacific countries have made much economic progress in recent decades, gender equality has not kept pace.
Discrimination and neglect are threatening women's very survival in this region, where women suffer from some of the world's lowest rates of employment, property ownership and political representation, just above the Arab region.
Despite laws guaranteeing equal pay for equal work, Asian-Pacific women earn considerably less than men, with the pay gap ranging from 54 to 90 percent, the report found.