The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is launching a series of innovative research studies examining equality of opportunities for women and men to participate in the economies of countries where the Bank invests.
The TaiwanBusiness-EBRD Technical Cooperation Fund has committed €725,000 for the programme, which will be implemented over the next two to three years.
Four key studies will be conducted thanks to the Taiwanese funding. They will include research identifying current barriers, best practices and opportunities to address issues within the care economy; the aim of this study will be to improve work-life balance and boost equal opportunities in the workplace, with a specific focus on the private sector. Other studies will focus on women’s participation in agribusiness supply chains, and on the changing roles and practices of men in transition economies over the past 25 years; the latter will be the first study of its kind in the EBRD region.
The signing agreement for the research programme took place in the presence of EBRD Vice President Betsy Nelson and Dr Chih-kung Liu, Head of the Taipei Representative Office in the UK at the Bank in London today.
Ms Nelson said: “Promoting gender equality has a positive impact on corporate performance, accelerates the growth of economies as a whole and strengthens societal cohesion. We are pleased that our Taiwanese partners have chosen to work with us in this ambitious programme and provide us with their generous support. “
The funding from the TaiwanBusiness-EBRD Technical Cooperation Fund will support the EBRD in implementing its recently adopted Strategy for the Promotion of Gender Equality. It endorses a vision of a future in which women and men in the EBRD’s recipient countries have the same rights and opportunities to access finance and employment, lead businesses, and participate in decision-making that affects their lives and their access to public services.
Dr Liu remarked: “We are committed to supporting EBRD projects that promote gender equality. We believe that they can add great value to sound business management and sustainable growth. Recognising that gender equality is a key element for market economies and societies to function well, we believe that the Taiwanese experience can also provide useful examples for the Bank’s countries of operations.”
Taiwanese donor contributions have provided important support to the EBRD’s work since the establishment of the Bank in 1991. These funds have been especially vital, for example, in the information technology-related areas of the knowledge economy, business advice to small and medium-sized enterprises, the EBRD’s Women in Business programme, and municipal and environmental infrastructure, as well as projects in sustainable resource management and intelligent transportation systems.
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