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PH ranks high in gender equality

  • Written by Cristina Lee-Pisco
  • Published in Nation
  • Read: 201

THE Philippines ranked 7th out of 144 countries as the most gender-equal country in the world, the Global Gender Gap Report 2016 showed.

In the top ten list (according to rankings) are: Iceland, Finland, Norway, Sweden, Rwanda, Ireland, Philippines, Slovenia, New Zealand and Nicaragua.

According to the Global Gender Gap Index 2016, “the Philippines (7th) maintains its respective ranking as the highest performer in the East Asia and the Pacific region, despite a slight decline in its overall score.”

The Philippines’ lower Economic Participation and Opportunity subindex score of 0.780 (21st place), caused by fewer female legislators, senior officials and managers, partly accounts for this fall, the report noted.

“Since 2006, the country has fully closed its gender gap on the Health and Survival subindex (ranking 1st, score 0.980). It has also managed to fully re-close its Educational Attainment  (rank 1, score 1.000) gender gap after a re-opening for the first time last year,” it stressed.

In 2016, the best-performing high-income group countries are the Nordics—Iceland, Finland, Norway and Sweden—which are also the overall leaders of the Index, while Bahrain, Oman and Saudi Arabia are the lowest-performing countries in this income group.
   
Among the upper-middle income group, Namibia, South Africa and Cuba lead the way, whereas Jordan, Lebanon and Iran, Islamic Rep. are the bottom performers.
   
In the lower-middle income group, the Philippines, Nicaragua and Bolivia take the top spots while the lower end of the group is made up of Syria, Pakistan and Yemen.
   
Finally, the low-income group—consisting mostly of Sub-Saharan African economies—is dominated by Rwanda, Burundi and Mozambique, with Benin, Mali and Chad comprising the lower ranks.
   
The East Asia and the Pacific region scores in the middle of the range of the Global Gender Gap Index with an average remaining gender gap of just under 32%.
   
With the Philippines and New Zealand, the region is home to two of the overall Index’s top ten performers, both having closed over 78% of their total gender gap—far ahead of the region’s next best-placed country—while the lower half of the region’s economies are yet to cross the threshold of having closed 70% of it or more, the report said.
   
The East Asia and the Pacific region is also home to three of the five most-improved countries over the past decade on the Health and Survival gender gap, although out of the 16 countries in the region only four—Cambodia, Mongolia, Thailand and the Philippines—have fully closed that gap.
   
With a regional average of 94%, East Asia and the Pacific is the lowest-ranked region globally on this subindex.
   
“Only two countries in the region have currently fully closed the Education Attainment gender gap, the Philippines being one of the two. Half of the countries in the region have closed the gender gap for professional and technical workers.”
   
The Philippines (7) and New Zealand (9) maintain their overall Index top ten rankings on the back of strong scores on closing the Political Empowerment (ranking 17th, score 0.386) gender gap and despite the Philippines’ small decline on the Economic Participation and Opportunity subindex.
   
The Global Gender Gap Index was developed in 2006 partially to address the need for a consistent and comprehensive measure for gender equality that can track a country’s progress over time.
   
This Index provides a comprehensive set of data and a clear method for tracking gaps on critical indicators so that countries may set priorities within their own economic, political and cultural contexts.
   
The Report continues to highlight the strong correlation between a country’s gender gap and its economic performance, and summarizes some of the latest research on the case for gender equality.
   
Also, the Report highlights the message to policy-makers that countries that want to remain competitive and inclusive will need to make gender equality a critical part of their human capital development. In particular, learning between countries and public-private cooperation within countries will be critical elements of closing the gender gap.
   
We hope that the information contained in the Global Gender Gap Report series will serve as a basis for continued benchmarking by countries on their progress towards gender equality, help support the case for closing gender gaps and encourage further research on policies and practices that are effective at promoting change.
   
The magnitude of gender gaps in countries around the world is the combined result of various socio-economic, policy and cultural variables. The Global Gender Gap Index was developed in 2006 partially to address the need for a consistent and comprehensive measure for gender equality that can track a country’s progress over time. The Index does not seek to set priorities for countries but rather to provide a comprehensive set of data and a clear method for tracking gaps on critical indicators so that countries may set priorities within their own economic, political and cultural contexts.
   
The Report continues to highlight the strong correlation between a country’s gender gap and its economic performance, and summarizes some of the latest research on the case for gender equality.