UN Women Country Representative in Egypt, Blerta Aliko, informed Daily News Egypt that there is a need and demand to increase women’s participation in the labour force in general, whether in the formal or informal sectors, as well as in the private and governmental sectors.
In terms of the labour force, the percentage of female participation in the country’s workforce reached 22.9% between the ages of 15 to 64-year-olds. This figure represents nearly one-third of the men’s share in the labour force, which was 69.9% for the same age group, according to the latest statistics released by the Central Agency for Public Mobilisation and Statistics (CAPMAS).
The CAPMAS previously stated that the percentage of female employees in the governmental sector reached 25.8%, versus 74.2% for males.
“We saw that the level of Egyptian women’s education and qualifications are equal, and on par with men’s, but their opportunities in accessing employment opportunities are much lower than them,” according to Aliko.
“The unemployment rate reached 23.6% for females, compared to 8.9% for males in 2016,” the CAPMAS formerly stated.
Notably, Egypt Vision 2030 targets raising the women’s participation rate in the labour market to 35% by 2020, and to 40% by 2030, according to Minister of Planning, Hala Al-Saeed.
There are multiple reasons for women’s fewer chances in participating in the labour force, the most important one being women’s qualifications and meeting the required criterions corresponding with the job market, indicated Aliko.
Regarding the UN’s functions in Egypt, Aliko concluded that UN Women in Egypt is currently working on three focal points. The first is paying attention to increasing women’s participation and leadership; the second is empowering women economically— which begins with giving marginalised women banking, fiscal, economic and financial literacy training— and the third is ending violence against women.
“We will continue supporting women, especially the marginalised categories, to ensure they are involved in economic and political life, in line with changing policies. This is our niche,” stressed the UN Women Country Representative in Egypt.