CAIRO (UNA-OIC) – Women Development Organization (WDO) Participated in the Egyptian/ OIC Side Event on Women’s Economic Empowerment on the Margins of the 66th Session of the CSW in New York.
Dr. Afnan Alshuaiby, the Executive Director of THE WDO, participated as one of the key note speakers in the side event on women’s economic empowerment held by the National Council for Women of Egypt, in collaboration with the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, on the margins of the 66th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW).
H.E. Dr. Maya Morsy, the President of the National Council for Women, introduced the newly appointed Executive Director of WDO, Dr. Afnan Alshuaiby, and highlighted the efforts exerted by the Egyptian government in facilitating CSW61, which adopted the agreed conclusions on the topic.
Dr. Alshuaiby, highlighted that women’s economic participation is not new for OIC, since not only it is referenced in the OIC Plan of Action for the Advancement of Women (OPAAW), but it also represents the Second Thematic Pillar of WDO, whereby some of the overarching objectives include the increase of OIC’s member-states’ GDPs, through women’s financial inclusion and the reduction of their unemployment rates.
She also mentioned that the agreed conclusions of the CSW61, which Egypt facilitated in 2017 on the Economic Empowerment of Women are the only international instruments comprehensively tackling the topic.
Ambassador Tariq Ali Bakheet, Assistant Secretary General of OIC for Humanitarian, Cultural and Social Affairs, highlighted the efforts done by OIC in promoting the economic empowerment of women and establishing the Women Development Organization as the center of the gender equality architecture within the OIC system. Ms. Anita Bhatia, UN-Women’s Deputy Executive Director for UN Coordination, Partnerships, Resources and Sustainability, congratulated the new Executive Director of WDO for assuming her post, and expressed the readiness of UN-Women to partner with and support WDO as it is a great platform to influence policy, and improve the situation of women and girls across four continents. H.E. Ambassador Naela Gabr, the Chair of the OIC Women Consultative Council, gave a comprehensive road map for all stakeholders to guarantee the economic participation and financial inclusion of women.
During the panel discussion, the panelists tackled the topic from different angles including the Egyptian success stories for women’s economic empowerment and financial inclusion presented by H.E. Dr. Hala Alsaeed, Minister of Planning and Economic Development of Egypt, the Arab and regional situation presented by Ms. Mehrinaz El Awady, Leader of the Gender Justice, Population and Inclusive Development Cluster of ESCWA, and finally, the OIC situation presented by Mr. Syed Haasan Alsagoff, Lead Economic Empowerment Program Specialist at the Islamic Development Bank.