Social Issues

Gender gap will take over 130 years to close, WEF says

By Antonio Broto

Geneva, Jul 13 (EFE).- It will take 132 years for women to have the same opportunities in economics, education, health and political power as men if the gender gap continues closing at its current rate, World Economic Forum (WEF) warned in its annual report Wednesday.

This year’s report has showed slight progress compared to 2021 when the WEF predicted it would take nearly 136 years to reach gender parity, but still insufficient to make up for when the coronavirus pandemic pushed the gap back by a generation.

Saadia Zahidi, the managing director of the WEF, said during presenting the report that there is a risk women may lose the future economic performance of diversity.

The gender gap in political empowerment remained the largest, as it closed by only 22%, meaning that the number of men in positions such as lawmakers, ministers and heads of state is almost fourfold that of women, a gap that would take 155 years to close.

In economic opportunities, it is relatively low with 68.1% and the WEF estimates that women would need 151 years to reach parity.

In education, the gender gap has closed by 94.4% but will still need 22 years to draw level.

The report added that health and survival have the smallest gap as it has closed by 95.8%, but warned that this field could suffer a reversal.

Iceland came out for the 13th time as the world’s most gender-equal country, followed by Finland and Norway, New Zealand, Sweden, Rwanda, Nicaragua, Namibia, the Republic of Ireland and Germany.

Further down the 146-rank list comes France in 15th position, Spain in 17th, and the United States in the 27th.

China came in 102nd, with Japan and India ranked 116th and 135th, respectively.

The report studies the presence of women in leadership positions in companies, among other aspects.

While equality is almost reached in NGOs and institutions, the figures are much lower in energy companies as only 20% of positions of executive power are in the hands of women, according to the report.EFE


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