Gender equality and sustainable development

Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan (13 November 2015) – The conference “Gender Equality and Sustainable Development for Transformative Change” took place on 12-13 November 2015 at the American University of Central Asia.   The conference focused on the agenda of sustainable development up to 2030. It was organized by the UN Development Programme and UN Environment Programmes’ Poverty-Environment Initiative (PEI) in the Kyrgyz Republic, UN Women country office and the American University of Central Asia.

The main objective of the conference was to strengthen the existing networks for the exchange of experience between various institutions, the scientific community, practitioners and development partners. The agenda included issues on the relationship between economic growth, social development, environment, and empowerment of women.

“The world’s scientists and experts have established a relationship of gender equality and sustainable development between a wide range of areas such as energy, health, education, food security, climate change, human rights, consumption, production patterns and urbanization. Years of development of different countries, sectors and regions show how women, having equal access and equal opportunity for control over resources, are able to not only improve the lives of individuals, families and peoples, but also to help ensure the sustainability of the environment,” – said Roza Otunbayeva, Ex-President of Kyrgyzstan and the founder of the Public Foundation “Initiative of Roza Otunbayeva.”

“In many countries, and the Kyrgyz Republic is not an exception, women, especially in rural areas have limited access to decision-making processes, the natural and economic resources, information and modern technologies”, – said in her opening speech Aliona Nikulita, Deputy Resident Representative of the UNDP in the Kyrgyz Republic.

According to data from the National Statistics Committee, 65% of women live in rural areas, only 17.8% of them head the farms, only 39.5% of them have jobs, but in comparison with men, the payment for their work is low while the agricultural products are mainly produced by women. 80% of women who die in pregnancy and childbirth in Kyrgyzstan are rural women and 75% of deaths are the result of women’s poverty and inequality.

The conference was attended by representatives of government agencies, non-governmental and international organizations, experts in the field of economy and finance, climate change, environment and gender issues from Central Asia, Russia, Turkey and Nairobi.

The participants of the conference discussed the achievements, lessons learned and ways to ensure the requirements of gender equality and the full participation of Central Asian women in policies and programs for inclusive economic growth and environmental sustainability.

For more information and organization of interview, please contact: Aigul Bolotova, UNDP Communications / Public Relations specialist, tel.: +996 771 77 79 75, e-mail: [email protected]


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