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Gender Equality and Panama

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National Forum on Gender Equality in Chiriqui held in Boquete

The main objective of this activity was to provide an inter-institutional and citizen dialog, to assess the progress and challenges in the area of gender equality and equity in the public policies of Panama on territorial rural development, in order to systematize the results and presenting them in the regional symposium of the countries that make up the Central American Integration System- SICA.

The program began with the opening words of the Licdo. Orlando Torres, Director of Rural Development and Chairman of the National Committee of the ECADERT.

Among the participants who formed part of this forum was present a representation of the Municipality of Boquete, a group of members of the Panamanian Network of Rural Women- REPAMUR, the Director of the Office of the Institute for Women (INAMU), chapter of Chiriqui, representatives of the territories of cross-border Bocas del Toro and Chiriqui, member of the Council Territorial Development CDT in Veraguas, the head of the agency of Boquete, making approximately 65 people in this activity.

Among the exhibitors who gathered was present Licda. Nadya White, Executive Secretary of the Central American Agricultural Council SICA, Licdo. Ruben Quiroz, planner of the Rural Development Division of the measure, Licda. Dalibeth Araúz, Director of the Office INAMU Chiriqui.

On the other hand was the participation of Licda. Anayansi Perez and Carmen Abrego the Program of Rural Women in the Rural Development Division, in conjunction with the experiences of members of the Panamanian Network of Rural Women- REPAMUR of Panama Oeste, Chiriqui and Bocas del Toro, taking advantage of this opportunity to coordinate the IV Meeting for Latin America and the Caribbean of rural women who will take place from 15 to 19 October 2017 in this province.


Edited by Moderator_02
edited topic title to make it more general and encompassing
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Panama, Chile and Argentina Leading the Way in Latin America to Close the Workforce Gender Gap

Fon Mathuros, Head of Media, World Economic Forum; Tel.: +41 79 201 0211, Email: fma@weforum.org

  • World Economic Forum and Inter-American Development Bank have joined forces with leaders in Panama to close the workforce gender gap
  • The Vice-President of Panama announces plans to set up a Gender Parity Task Force in the country, at the World Economic Forum Sustainable Development Impact Summit
  • More women than men now enrol in secondary and tertiary education in Panama, giving the country a huge opportunity to leverage the skills and talents of women for the benefit of the economy

New York City, USA, 19 September 2017 – A new Gender Parity Task Force is being established in Panama to increase the number of women entering and progressing in the labour market. 

Applying a model of public-private collaboration on workplace gender parity developed by the Forum and being taken forward in Latin America in partnership with the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), Panama is the latest country committing to action. The task force will be led by senior government and business leaders in the country. 

“Gender parity is not just about equality: it also yields a growth dividend. If Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) region achieved parity in labour force participation of men and women, our GDP could increase by 16%,” said Luis Alberto Moreno, President, Inter-American Development Bank, Washington DC. “Working with the Forum, we are helping LAC countries establish gender parity task forces to boost female participation in the labour force, reduce gender wage gaps and increase female representation in management and professional positions.” 

Women are still less likely to enter the labour force in Panama. While the country has closed the gap in terms of women’s participation in professional roles, Panama currently ranks 105th out of 144 countries on the broader labour force participation gap. Women who are in the workforce are also much less likely to be paid the same as their male colleagues for equivalent work or to reach senior management roles. 

In recent years however, Panama has closed the gender gap in education, with women outperforming men in secondary and tertiary educational enrolment. This presents the country with a huge opportunity to leverage the skills and talents of women in business, the public sector and the wider economy and society. It is this potential that a Gender Parity Task Force can help maximize, building on the good work, leadership and desire for additional action already present in Panama. 

Isabel Saint Malo de Alvarado, Vice-President of Panama and Minister of Foreign Affairs, said: “Women have made significant advances in education and the workplace in Panama. Through this public-private partnership we will accelerate their progress further and ensure that they are ready for the future of work.”

The task force will identify key economic gender gaps in Panama, develop public- and private-sector recommendations for narrowing those, and agree a three-year action plan. Central to this effort will be engaging companies on the strong business case for advancing gender parity in their workforces and encouraging them to commit to action, while the government drives new policies and initiatives and tracks the impact of action.

Panama is the third country in Latin America to launch this public-private collaboration model in partnership with the IDB and supported by the World Economic Forum’s platform. Chile was the first country to apply the approach, followed by Argentina.

The World Economic Forum is convening its first Sustainable Development Impact Summit in New York on 18‑19 September 2017. The summit is dedicated to accelerating progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris climate agreement through public-private cooperation and the application of technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.



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Dozens of women demonstrate in Panama for gender equality in politics

Sun, 05/06/2018 - 23:23

Diseño sin título (113).jpg


Dozens of members of the Women National Forum for Political Parties (Fonamupp) demonstrated at the doors of the Electoral Court, on Saturday, to demand the institution to force political parties to have gender equality in their lists in the 2019 general elections.

"A few days ago the Electoral Court repealed Decree 12 of March 21, 2018 that stipulated that equality was mandatory in the political parties in the next electoral contest and left it at the discretion of the parties," Solangel Robinson, member of the feminist association and of the opposition Democratic Revolutionary Party (PRD), told Acan-Efe.

The protesters demanded an "immediate" rectification and a return to the original electoral decree, which established the norms of the general elections of May 5, 2019 and that in its article 40 described what pertains to gender equality.

"The decree was eliminated suddenly and nobody from the Electoral Court has yet come out to explain why it was done," said the young politician.

The demonstrators, who were dressed in black, shouted slogans such as "Without women there is no democracy", "Parity is not a gift, it is a right" and "Women united will never be defeated", among other slogans.

"There are very few women who have the opportunity to participate in political life, what was sought with that decree was to help women have that space, since it has been shown that they cannot do it by themselves," said Robinson.

The protest took place while the Electoral Court made the official announcement of the next general elections, in which 2.7 million Panamanians, mostly women, will elect 1,721 offices, including the next president of the country.



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Gender inequality in Panama worse than Costa Rica, Colombia


Posted 25/12/2019

Panama continues near the bottom of the  Gender Inequality Index (GDI)  with a value of 0.460, placing it at position 108 of 189 countries. Well below neighboring countries, such as Costa Rica (0.285) and Colombia (0.411), which occupy positions 61 and 94, respectively.

The inequality that exists between men and women is one of the biggest obstacles that slows down human development, says the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in its Human Development Report 2019

The index measures the disadvantages that women may experience with respect to men in three dimensions: reproductive health, empowerment and the labor market.

The situation is due to the fact that in Panama only 18.3% of parliamentary seats are occupied by women, and the participation of women in the labor market is 52.5% compared to 80.5% in the case of men. However, 74.8% of adult women have reached at least a secondary level of education compared to 68.4% of their male counterparts.

UNDP research specialist, Martín Fuentes, said that women are more prepared in the educational aspect, but there are still obstacles so that they can occupy positions of high hierarchy: such as the overload of domestic tasks or cultural beliefs that women are not good leaders.

In addition, he indicated that, out of 193 countries, 11 are governed by women.

On the other hand, Heriberto Tapia, a member of the team that prepared the UNDP Human Development Report, explained that general and gender inequality is a “serious problem” in Panama, since women do not have the same opportunities as men .

Tapia said that in Panama it is known that women work longer hours than men, but receive 35% less income than their male counterparts, which he considered "a great injustice."

He added that, although the measurements on gender inequality biases are global, in the case of Panama there are indicators that he described as "worse than they would expect for the level of development that the country reaches."



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