Economy

Canada ranks 16th on World Economic Forum's annual gender gap list

Canada ranks 16th on World Economic Forum's annual gender gap list

The Philippines, which has been among the top 10 most gender equal countries since the World Economic Forum report was launched in 2006, only got better this year, as it improved two notches at eighth place.

The report showed that there were now proportionately fewer women than men participating in the workforce, suggesting that automation was having a disproportionate impact on jobs traditionally performed by women. "In terms of political empowerment, the progress achieved over the past decade has started to reverse". The WEF ranked the United Kingdom 50th out of 149 countries for gender pay, with women collecting 70 per cent of that paid to men.

Despite its performance, Iceland saw a slight drop in economic participation and opportunity after an increase in the gender gap between legislators, senior officials and managers.

"Projecting current trends into the future, the overall global gender gap will close in 108 years across the 106 countries covered since the first edition of the report", WEF's researchers concluded.

Here are the top 10 most gender-equal countries. While the USA performed better than average for the economic participation ranking, it did particularly badly on the political empowerment indices, coming in at 98th place-just below Pakistan.

Women make up 42% of Finland's parliament and 38.5% of ministers, which accounts for the nation's strong political empowerment rating.

The WEF survey, covering 149 countries, examined gender equality in the fields of politics, economy, education and health.

More news: Geraint Thomas wins the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award

The Philippines' gender gap fully closed the educational attainment sub-index.

The forum pointed out that while the world has closed 68% of its gender gap, only one pillar - economic opportunity - made progress in contracting the gulf this year.

"Although the economic opportunity gap has slightly reduced this year, the progress has been slow, especially in terms of participation of women in labor force, where the gender gap slightly reversed", the report continued.

Similarly, women held just 34pc of managerial positions across the countries where data was available, and less than 7pc in the in the four worst-performing countries - Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, and Pakistan. Women also continue to be underrepresented in industries that utilize science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) skills.

And while China, like most other countries, has almost ideal equality in terms of health care, far more boys than girls are born each year.

"In an era when human skills are increasingly important and complementary to technology, the world can not afford to deprive itself of women's talent in sectors in which talent is already scarce", said Klaus Schwab, founder and executive chairman of the WEF.


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