UN Women and the Philippine business community take stock of gender equality in the workplace ahead of International Women’s Day

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2 March 2022 – A report assessing the workplace gender equality disclosures of top Philippine companies is to be launched on Friday, ahead of International Women’s Day 2022 on March 8. The report will be presented alongside a roadmap for gender policy and action, at an event held by Philippine business associations together with UN Women.

“We invite the business community, especially publicly listed companies and regulators, to join and participate in this timely event to celebrate Women’s Month,” said Ma. Aurora ‘Boots’ Geotina-Garcia, founding chair and president of the Philippine Women’s Economic Network (PhilWEN), and co-chair of the Philippine Business Coalition for Women Empowerment (PBCWE). “Let us all make gender equality a reality in the Philippines.”

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Entitled “Accelerating the Sustainability Momentum and Workplace Gender Equality Advantage,” the event will feature distinguished speakers and experts in environmental, social and governance (ESG) reporting and workplace gender equality. Participants will include EU Ambassador Luc Véron and Richard Sisson, deputy head of mission of the Australian Embassy.

The forum and report launch will be held jointly by PhilWEN, through PBCWE, together with the EU-funded WeEmpowerAsia Programme of UN Women and the Australian initiative Investing in Women, and will run from 9:30 to 11:30 Philippine Standard Time. This year’s International Women’s Day has the theme “Gender equality today for a sustainable tomorrow.” Joining the panel will be Kelvin Lester Lee of the Philippine Securities and Exchange Commission, Jose Solomon Cortez, associate director of the Ramon V. del Rosario Center for Social Responsibility of the Asian Institute of Management, Roel Refran, chief operating officer of the Philippine Stock Exchange, and Allinnettes Adigue, head of the ASEAN Regional Hub of the international independent standards organization Global Reporting Initiative. The event will be moderated by Ana Margarita ’Ginggay’ Hontiveros-Malvar, vice president for reputation management of Aboitiz Equity Ventures.

The forum aims to highlight the best gender equality practices and policies of publicly listed firms, as well as how regulators can better drive innovation and productivity by putting a premium on sustainability data. The new resources that will be launched are: 1) Women’s Empowerment Principles Policy and Action Roadmap Philippines; and 2) a report titled Workplace Gender Equality-Sustainability Reporting: Initial Analysis of the Top 30 Publicly Listed Companies in the Philippines as of July 2021. These resources aim to contribute to the existing literature proving that workplace gender equality and women empowerment are key factors for improved overall company performance.

“UN Women sees the importance of this forum and resources to further encourage companies and businesses to be more intent in their operations and business conduct that will promote diversity, inclusion and gender equality in policies and practices as well as in reporting to stakeholders,” said Lenlen Mesina, country programme manager for WeEmpowerAsia in the Philippines.

‘Boots’ Geotina-Garcia added that “there is plenty of work to be done when it comes to workplace gender equality. More efforts need to be made to collect data on essential indicators in order to increase opportunities for better returns.”

This event is supported by the EU Delegation to the Philippines and the Australian Government.

Registration is free of charge at https://bit.ly/WGEPolicyForumLaunch2022.