Vietnam has made significant progress in gender equality, but
important challenges remain both socially and economically, says the
|Illustrative image (Source: Internet)|
Policy actions are needed to address these challenges
in the context of an economy making the transition from low to middle
income, Sudhir Shetty, Co-Director of the World Development Report 2012
on Gender Equality and Development, told media at the report launch in
Hanoi on Dec. 15.
Policymakers in developing countries in general need to focus on gender gaps, he said.
WDR 2012 shows that the one disparity that remains serious is the rate
at which girls and women die relative to men in developing countries.
Globally, excess female mortality after birth and “missing” girls at
birth account for an estimated 3.9 million women each year in low and
middle-income countries. About two-fifths are never born, due to a
preference for sons, a sixth die in early childhood, and over a third
die in their reproductive years.
The WDR 2012 calls
for action in four areas, namely addressing human capital issues, such
as excessive mortality of girls and women and gender gaps in education
where these persist; closing income and productivity gaps between women
and men; giving women a greater voice within households and societies;
and limiting the perpetuation of gender inequality across generations.
It recommends that to ensure progress on gender
equality is sustained, countries need to take concentrated and durable
measures such as reduction of the maternal mortality rate and additional
financing for social issues and environment, increasing women’s access
to economic opportunities. Each nation also needs to identify priorities
to address remaining gaps./.