Gender equality in workplace - key to the sustainable development of businesses

On October 19, Vietnam Business Coalition for Women’s Empowerment (VBCWE) has organized the Press Conference to launch the campaign "Career Has No Gender".

At the event. Source: VBCWE

This is the first systematic campaign in Vietnam on Workplace Gender Equality and women's economic empowerment.

Le Thanh Hang - CEO of VBCWE shared the message "Gender equality in the workplace is the key to the sustainable development of businesses"; VBCWE wishes to connect businesses committing to gender equality, creating a happy workplace and inspiring the realization of the women’s economic empowerment goals in the Vietnamese business community.

A range of activities are to take place, including seminars and political consultations.

Throughout the campaign activities there will be the companionship of three Ambassadors: Ha Thu Thanh - Chairperson and one of the founders of Deloitte Vietnam, Pham Thi Bich Hue - Chairwoman and CEO of Pan Pacific Logistics Corp and  Nguyen Ngoc My - CEO of Foodinco Land Company.

During the press conference, the Cooperation Agreement between VBCWE and Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI)’s Business Forum Magazine, Vietnam Young Entrepreneurs’ Association, Hanoi Association for Women Entrepreneurs is signed on the basis of participating in all campaign’s activities and supporting the workplace gender equality.

Vietnam is one of the few countries in the world that boasts of the highest ratio of women participating in the labour force (~72%). Vietnam also has very high percentage of women holding top management positions (~28% compared to global average of 19%). The government has also taken initiatives by revising the labour code and also rolling out a national strategy for Gender Equality.

However, there are still many barriers to gender equality in the workplace in Vietnam. The proportion of women involved in management and leadership has increased but is still low in general and disproportionate to the increase in the number of female workers. In some organizations a pay gap still exists between men and women doing the same job, there are fewer opportunities for women to access high-income jobs than for men, and women are also more vulnerable when businesses need to cut down their workforce.

It was in this backdrop that the Vietnam Business Coalition for Women’s Empowerment (VBCWE) came to be established in early 2018 by Investing in Women (IW), an initiative of the Australian Government. The key mandate being pursuing workplace gender equality (WGE) and women’s economic empowerment (WEE). Vietnam is one of the four countries in the SE Asia region chosen to execute this program.

The coalition is supported by the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI), Vietnam Business Council for Sustainable Development (VBCSD) as well as UN Women, ILO, IFC, CARE and Oxfam.

As for now, VBCWE is the only organization in Vietnam to provide businesses with comprehensive solutions, from assessment, training and consultancy to help build a thorough WGE strategy, through which improve work environment, enhance business performance and achieve sustainability goals.

 

Phuong Minh