KUWAIT: Janneke van der Graaff-Kukler, Deputy Regional Director of UN Women Regional Office for Arab States, said that the continuous efforts by the Kuwaiti government to empower women socially and economically is universally admired. The global appreciation of Kuwait’s state-level efforts came as a result of its commitment to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, endorsed by the UN in 1995.
Graaff-Kukler was addressing a ceremony, organized by the Secretariat General of the Supreme Planning Council in cooperation with the UN Development Programme, featuring several government departments and private establishments. The ceremony marked signing of the accord for genders’ equality at the workplace by 30 private Kuwaiti companies.
Kuwait is a pioneering example in the region with respect of empowering women, both at the public and private levels, Graaff-Kukler said, also noting that the Kuwaiti women have occupied leading positions and have contributed to pushing forward economic development and supplying the labor market with skilled personnel
Dr Khaled Al-Mahdi, the council secretary general, affirmed in a statement the Kuwaiti government’s ongoing support for women empowerment, noting that this approach is in harmony with the bases of the development strategy and New Kuwait Vision 2035. The Kuwaiti private sector, like the public sector, has managed to employ more women, empowering them with training, opportunities and promotion.
The Kuwaiti government’s efforts for empowering the women economically have intensified since 2015, when the late Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, adopted the UN objectives for sustainable development, Graaff-Kukler said, adding this approach was embodied in an action plan, executed over the past years, in tandem with the goals of New Kuwait Vision 2035.
Christian Tudor, the European Union Ambassador to Kuwait, said in his statement that the Kuwaiti government’s efforts resulted in attaining more gender equality at work. The EU, last year, applauded Kuwait’s adoption of a law on protection against domestic violence and appointment of eight female judges for the first time in Kuwait’s history.
Meanwhile, the UN resident representative, Hideko Hadziliac, stressed on the necessity of maintaining the accomplishments that have been made in Kuwait for gender equality. Dr Lubna Al-Qadhi, the head of the women’s research and studies center at Kuwait University, said in her address that Kuwait was the first country in the region that included women empowerment in its development plan.
Kuwait University and the planning council have trained many women to make them eligible for occupying leading posts in the public and private sectors, she said, noting that the future holds a lot of opportunities for the Kuwaiti women; with forecast participation in decision making at various levels. – KUNA