Global Gender Gap report says Philippines eighth best place for women

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Global Gender Gap

The Philippines took eighth place in the latest Global Gender Gap report — marking it as one of the best places for women to live in Asia.

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The report, released by the World Economic Forum (WEF) today (Tuesday, December 18) ranked 149 countries based on four categories: labour force participation, educational attainment, health and survival, and political empowerment.

The Philippines – which ranked in tenth place last year – has been in the top 10 most gender equal countries in the world since the report first launched in 2006. 

The WEF said the Philippines maintained its high rank due to “strong efforts to close the gender gap in political empowerment”.

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The WEF noted the country had managed to close about 80 per cent of the total gender gap — the “highest value ever recorded” for the Philippines.

However, the country needs to make improvements in the health and survival category.

In measuring this indicator, the WEF looked into the differences between women’s and men’s health based on life expectancy. It also studied the phenomenon of “missing women” in countries where families prefer to sons over daughters.

Twelve years ago — in the first report — the Philippines was ranked best in the world in the category. Now, it is 42nd out of 149.

Meanwhile, improvement in economic participation and opportunity in the Philippines was also recorded, as wages increased for women’s income and equal pay for similar work. This year, the Philippines ranked 14 out of 149 countries.

Global Gender Gap top 10

In the East Asia and Pacific region, New Zealand holds the top spot as the most gender equal country, placing seventh.

Countries in Europe dominated the top 10, with Iceland keeping top spot for the 10th consecutive year. Norway was second, Sweden third and Finland fourth.

Nicaragua was ranked fifth, Rwanda sixth and New Zealand seventh. After the Philippines, Ireland was ranked ninth, while Namibia completed the top 10.

Globally, however, the WEF said the gender gap reduced “only slightly” in 2018 after it reportedly widened for the first time last year. 

The Global Gender Gap Report 2018 concludes that “at the current rate of change” it will take about 108 years to close the overall gender gap while it will take 202 years to see full equality in the workplace.

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