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Less than half of women globally have jobs, UN report says

Less than half of women globally are in the job market, a gender gap that has hardly changed over the last 25 years, the United Nations said on Tuesday.

Less than half of women globally are in the job market, a gender gap that has hardly changed over the last 25 years, the United Nations said on Tuesday.

According to the World’s Women 2020 report, 47 per cent of women of working age have a job, compared to 74 per cent of men.

The figure is even lower in southern Asia, northern Africa and western Asia, where less than 30 per cent of women are in the labour market.

The coronavirus pandemic will likely widen the gender gap as it batters jobs often held by women, such as in paid domestic work, food services and retail.

Women’s economic potential is also restrained by unpaid domestic and care work, on which they spend about three times as many hours per day as men. That kind of work has intensified during the pandemic.

Women only represent 28 per cent of managers and 18 per cent of chief executive officers globally, according to the report.

“Progress towards equal power and equal rights for women remains elusive,” UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said.

“No country has achieved gender equality, and the Covid-19 crisis threatens to erode the limited gains that have been made.”

The report has been produced every five years by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs to measure the state of gender equality since the 1995 adoption of the Beijing Declaration, which set an agenda for women’s rights.

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