Women’s 20 open session

Women’s 20 open session

The meeting was held in Russia at the Second EWF for the first time 

The first meeting of the Women’s Twenty (W20) was held in Russia for the first time during the Second Eurasian Women’s Forum. The meeting participants exchanged views on the organization’s priorities for the near future and discussed its role in expanding women's economic opportunities for economic growth. 

The W20 was established in May 2015 as a format for interaction between the G20 and its social partners. The organization’s main goal is to support the economic development of G20 countries by strengthening the role of women in business decisions. This is particularly important since the G20 includes countries that make up 85% of the world economy.

Speakers at the meeting included Chair of W20 in the Argentine G20 presidency Susana Balbo, Member of the Board of the Association of German Women Entrepreneurs Karin Van Mourik, Deputy Director-General of the International Labour Organization Deborah Greenfield, Professor at the Research Institute for Science & Technology at the University of Tokyo Reiko Kuroda, and Founding President of the W20 Gülden Türktan.

The participants devoted significant attention to issues concerning the eradication of poverty and the development of agriculture.

One of the main discussion topics was surmounting the gender gap in the workforce due to an increase in the number of employed women. As the speakers noted, the most important thing is that the results achieved to this end are sustainable.

In Australia, a programme was adopted to double women’s involvement in the economy. Greenfield noted that the International Labour Organization is also very active in combating gender inequality.

Türktan stressed that, as a rule, men are prepared to take risky decisions, while women most often approach their jobs as consciously and responsibly as possible. The W20 founder reminded everyone about the well-known comparison that the man is the head and the woman is the neck. She believes that even if the final decision is made by a man, he simply needs to take into account the woman’s opinion.

The meeting participants expressed confidence that each state should take a step-by-step approach to attracting women to the economy and involving civil society in solving existing problems.

Today, women make up 50% of the world’s population. Of that amount, 60% of them have a higher education, yet only one third of them are employed in the economy. The speakers believe that women should become part of the labour resources of each state in which case they can make the economy more socially oriented. 

Anna Repina, Eurasian Women’s Community Information Agency