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Philippines keeps gender equality ranking

November 12, 2008 7:00pm
MANILA, Philippines - The Philippines retained its ranking as the best country in Asia where women are given equal opportunity along with their male counterparts, a Geneva-based group said.

In its 2008 Gender Gap Index, the World Economic Forum said the Philippines placed 6th in 130 countries included in the poll.

The Philippine ranking was the same that it had in 2007 and in 2006.

Dominating the list were European countries with Norway as the country which got the best rating in gender equality, followed by Finland, Sweden and Iceland, respectively.

New Zealand came in 5th, Denmark, 7th, Ireland, 8th, Netherlands, 9th and Latvia, 10th.

The Global Gender Gap Report 2008 is based on the innovative new methodology introduced in 2006 and includes detailed profiles that provide insight into the economic, legal and social aspects of the gender gap in each country. The Report measures the size of the gender gap in four critical areas of inequality between men and women such as economic participation and opportunity; educational attainment; political empowerment; and health and survival.

The WEF said the Report provides an insight into the gaps between women and men in over 92 percent of the world's population.

Of the Gender Gap Subindices, the Philippines was given a score of 8 in Economic Participation and Opportunity; 1 in Educational Attainment; 1 in Health and Survival; and 22 in Political Empowerment.

“The Philippines is one of two countries in Asia to have closed the gender gap on both education and health and is one of only eleven in the world to have done so.

However, the Philippines’ score relative to its performance in 2007 fell due to a drop in the perceived wage equality between women and men employed in similar positions and a decrease in the percentage of women ministers," the WEF said.

With the present economic gloom, the group said giving women equal opportunity will help in addressing the crisis.

“Greater representation of women in senior leadership positions within governments and financial institutions is vital not only to find solutions to the current economic turmoil, but to stave off such crises in future. At the World Economic Forum, we put strong emphasis on addressing this challenge with a multistakeholder approach through our global and regional Gender Parity Groups," said Klaus Schwab, founder and executive chairman of the WEF. - GMANews.TV