Addressing challenges faced by women in the world of work is a key theme for a United Nations forum on leveraging the power of partnerships to drive the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The World Entrepreneurs Investment Forum 2017, which opened earlier today in Manama, the capital of Bahrain, is focusing its discussions on, among others, how to enhance the role of women entrepreneurs, given their critical importance to realizing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
“The important point is that all 17 Goals are interrelated. They are interconnected,” Hiroshi Kuniyoshi, the Deputy Director General of the UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), told UN News.
SDG9, in particular, promotes sustainable industrial development, but the UN agency is working on all Goals, including Goal 5 on achieving gender equality and empowering all women and girls, he explained.
“So the aim of this Forum, is really, how to achieve all 17 Goals by working together with the public and private sectors, entrepreneurs, UN agencies and [other partners],” added the senior UNIDO official, noting that as an outcome of the World Forum, the agency expects to have a declaration on how to proceed further on these issues.
According to UNDIO – which, together with the Government of Bahrain has organized the World Forum – industrialization directly affects women's roles and participation in the work force, as well as in wider economic life and, therefore, industrial strategies and polices, if properly designed and implemented, can address gender-based discrimination, and promote women's empowerment.
In this context, Wednesday's discussions will be focused on Women in industry, one of the World Forum's three sub-themes, with access to financial resources and new technologies, building support networks, improving technical and material skills, and addressing social and cultural barriers being the key issues in the spotlight.
Underscoring that all technical cooperation projects at UNIDO have an integral and essential component on empowering women, Mr. Kuniyoshi expressed: “Everything that we are doing includes a perspective on empowerment of women and promoting gender equality.”