Malaysia ranks poorly in gender equality

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Gender equality MalaysiaA recent index published by the World Economic Forum (WEF) ranked Malaysia 102 out of 136 countries, within ASEAN just ahead of Cambodia (104). The 2013 Global Gender Gap Index placed Philippines 5th in the world above Singapore at 58, Thailand at 65, Laos at 60, Vietnam at 73, Brunei 88 and Indonesia at 95. Myanmar is was not listed.

The index measures gender equality across four areas of health, education, economics and politics, covering 90 per cent of the world’s population. Malaysia’s ranking in the index has steadily slipped from 72 in 2006 when the report was launched.

Last week, Human Resources Minister Datuk Richard Riot denied there is a gender gap in the country, saying more than 46 per cent of the workforce was female, according to the Malaysian Insider.

“Even though the WEF put Malaysia in 22nd spot in its human capital index, it placed the country at the lowest in the gender gap indicator, which is not accurate,” he added, refuting an earlier WEF report that also placed Malaysia lowest in gender gap involvement in the economy.

In 2012, another report by an international organisation known as Social Watch ranked Malaysia at the very bottom of East Asia and the Pacific in terms of gender equity. The report computed 154 countries and while Malaysia did fairly well in terms of closing the gap in education, it did not do the same for the gap in gender economic empowerment.

Although the government has announced measures to aid the development of women in the workforce and in businesses through the Bumiputera Economic Empowerment Programme and the Budget 2014 announced on October 25, companies were reminded to be more inclusive in providing equal opportunities.

“While governments have an important role to play in creating the right policy framework for improving women’s access and opportunities, it is also imperative that companies create workplaces where the best talent can flourish,” said WEF executive chairman Klaus Schwab in the report’s opening statement.

Schwab also said that in order to close the gender gap, changes must be done to ensure equal economic empowerment between men and women.

“Cash transfer programmes, equal access to credit and financial services, parental leave, affordable childcare facilities, innovative hiring process, redesigned career paths and meaningful mentoring programmes are but a few of the changes that must be made,” he added.

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

A recent index published by the World Economic Forum (WEF) ranked Malaysia 102 out of 136 countries, within ASEAN just ahead of Cambodia (104). The 2013 Global Gender Gap Index placed Philippines 5th in the world above Singapore at 58, Thailand at 65, Laos at 60, Vietnam at 73, Brunei 88 and Indonesia at 95. Myanmar is was not listed.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Gender equality MalaysiaA recent index published by the World Economic Forum (WEF) ranked Malaysia 102 out of 136 countries, within ASEAN just ahead of Cambodia (104). The 2013 Global Gender Gap Index placed Philippines 5th in the world above Singapore at 58, Thailand at 65, Laos at 60, Vietnam at 73, Brunei 88 and Indonesia at 95. Myanmar is was not listed.

The index measures gender equality across four areas of health, education, economics and politics, covering 90 per cent of the world’s population. Malaysia’s ranking in the index has steadily slipped from 72 in 2006 when the report was launched.

Last week, Human Resources Minister Datuk Richard Riot denied there is a gender gap in the country, saying more than 46 per cent of the workforce was female, according to the Malaysian Insider.

“Even though the WEF put Malaysia in 22nd spot in its human capital index, it placed the country at the lowest in the gender gap indicator, which is not accurate,” he added, refuting an earlier WEF report that also placed Malaysia lowest in gender gap involvement in the economy.

In 2012, another report by an international organisation known as Social Watch ranked Malaysia at the very bottom of East Asia and the Pacific in terms of gender equity. The report computed 154 countries and while Malaysia did fairly well in terms of closing the gap in education, it did not do the same for the gap in gender economic empowerment.

Although the government has announced measures to aid the development of women in the workforce and in businesses through the Bumiputera Economic Empowerment Programme and the Budget 2014 announced on October 25, companies were reminded to be more inclusive in providing equal opportunities.

“While governments have an important role to play in creating the right policy framework for improving women’s access and opportunities, it is also imperative that companies create workplaces where the best talent can flourish,” said WEF executive chairman Klaus Schwab in the report’s opening statement.

Schwab also said that in order to close the gender gap, changes must be done to ensure equal economic empowerment between men and women.

“Cash transfer programmes, equal access to credit and financial services, parental leave, affordable childcare facilities, innovative hiring process, redesigned career paths and meaningful mentoring programmes are but a few of the changes that must be made,” he added.

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