At the helm of the world's main economic forum, we want to see tangible results in women's economic empowerment.
Jakarta (ANTARA) - Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs, Airlangga Hartarto, emphasized the importance of women's economic empowerment and equitable recovery in his virtual speech at the Women 20 (W20) Summit.

The summit is being held in North Sumatra from July 19 to 21, 2022. The W20 is an official G20 engagement group established during the Turkish presidency in 2015.

“Putting women's economic empowerment at the heart of the forum is a key to delivering a successful global exit strategy. This is important because, across all the G20 members, gender gaps persist and hinder sustainable development," he said, according to an official statement released on Thursday.

Women's economic empowerment around the world has continued to face major obstacles amid the COVID-19 pandemic and economic crisis.

Hence, the W20, as an outreach group presenting women's voices during the Indonesian G20 presidency, is committed to bridging gender disparities.

The G20 leaders agreed to reduce the gender gap in the labor force by 25 percent by 2025 at the 2014 Summit in Brisbane, which was supported by establishing the W20 during the Turkish presidency in 2015.

Indonesia, which is holding the G20 Presidency this year, has a major responsibility to focus on the delivery of the mission, Hartarto said.

"At the helm of the world's main economic forum, we want to see tangible results in women's economic empowerment," he added.

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The minister lauded the progress made toward women's economic empowerment and the strength of the programs initiated so far. About half of the G20 members have shown better-than-expected progress toward achieving the 2025 goals compared to 2012, he said.

The role of women is increasingly significant in the national economy, he noted, adding that at least 61 percent of the country's women contribute to the economy and about 50 percent of the 60 million MSMEs in Indonesia are owned by women.

He viewed these as significant developments because Indonesian MSMEs absorb 97 percent of the workforce in the business sector.

The Indonesian government has also continued to support women's economic empowerment through the allocation of People's Business Credit (KUR) and the Pre-Employment Card Program, the minister said.

Hartarto lauded the strong synergy among G20 countries, with the W20 as an essential engagement group, especially on sharing actions for achieving a more inclusive and resilient global exit strategy.

"We need to do more to achieve W20's goal of Recover Together and Recover Equally," he said.

The Indonesian Presidency has identified two main priorities for women's empowerment, which aim to create new economic value and empower women in the new economy.

The first priority is to support women-owned MSMEs to fully participate in an inclusive digital-based economic transformation.

And the second priority is to invest in building the digital skills and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) skills of women and girls to enable their participation in all economic fields.

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Translator: Kuntum KR, Fardah
Editor: Suharto
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