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Finance, technology leaders come together to discuss gender equality

By Rana Husseini - Mar 14,2023 - Last updated at Mar 14,2023

AMMAN — Finance and technology experts on Monday gathered to discuss gender equality, closing the digital gender gap and achieving sustainable development.

The one-day meeting was titled “DigitAll: Innovation and technology for gender equality: Ring the Bell Jordan 2023”.

The event, or the Ring the Bell for Gender Equality (RTB) celebration, was organised by the Amman Stock Exchange (ASE), the International Finance Corporation (IFC), UN Women Jordan and UN Global Compact Jordan.

Minister of Investment Kholoud Saqqaf was in attendance. 

This event focused on discussing women’s contributions in the advancement of transformative technology and highlighted the challenges and costs of excluding women from the digital world, according to a statement from the organisers.

It also included panels that discussed the role of women in sustainability and tech, while the second session touched on the digital gender gap.

ASE CEO Mazen Wathaifi told the gathering that the ASE has joined the WEPs by signing a statement supporting women’s empowerment and enhancing their position in society.

Wathaifi also stressed the need to involve women in decision-making processes and place women in leadership positions, while creating equal opportunities for both genders.

“Technology and innovation offer new pathways towards women’s economic empowerment under the government’s Economic Modernisation Vision,” Wathaifi stressed.

An inclusive digital economy that enables greater access and affordability, online safety and digital education opportunities, is essential for advancing gender equality in the labour market, he added.

UN Women in Jordan Representative Nicolas Burniat said: “UN Women is committed to working with the private sector to close the digital gender divide and address the inherent biases, harmful social norms and negative gender stereotypes which prevent women from fully participating in and benefitting from the digital transformation.”

During the event, the statement added, ASE invited listed companies to declare a public commitment to the WEPs and promote gender equality by listing criteria and gender data disclosure in sustainability reporting.

ASE also shared the steps it is taking to build awareness within its network of listed and member companies by promoting and utilising the WEPs as a primary vehicle for corporate delivery on the gender equality dimensions of the 2030 agenda and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

The WEPs are a set of principles offering guidance to businesses on how to promote gender equality and women’s empowerment in the workplace, marketplace and community. 

The theme for this year’s International Women’s Day is “DigitALL: Innovation and technology for gender equality”. To commemorate the occasion, more than 123 stock exchanges and central counterparty clearing houses around the world supported the ninth annual RTB campaign to raise awareness on opportunities to advance gender equality and achieve sustainable development in the private sector.

For the ninth consecutive year, markets in 90 countries are planning to ring opening or closing bells to celebrate International Women’s Day 2023 — starting from March 2, 2023 and continuing until the end of the month. 

The Ring the Bell for Gender Equality initiative is coordinated by the IFC, Sustainable Stock Exchanges Initiative, UN Global Compact, UN Women and the World Federation of Exchanges.

Exchanges that have participated in ringing the bell for gender equality in the past nine years have made progress by promoting women’s access to finance and encouraging women to invest in public markets.

In addition, the focus was also on developing new products, such as sustainability-linked bonds with gender criteria and gender bonds, and signing and adopting the WEPs.

 

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