Date: Friday, 19 August 2011
Event: Viet Nam Country Gender Assessment
Venue: Sheraton Hotel, Hanoi
Speaker: Mr. Eamonn Murphy, Resident Coordinator a.i. of the United Nations in Viet Nam
Ms Victoria Kwakwa, World Bank Country Director
Ms Suzette Mitchell, UN Women Representative and fellow UN colleagues,
Government representatives, donor and civil society partners and representatives of academic organizations, ladies and gentlemen.
It is a great pleasure to be here with you today. First, let me congratulate the entire Country Gender Assessment team, on behalf the United Nations in Viet Nam, for all your hard work in developing this important report. I know that this has been a truly collaborative effort, with technical input from a variety of partners and drawing on multiple data sources. And I think the result is an excellent example of the type of high quality, practical resource that can be produced when we draw upon the knowledge and expertise of different partners in the spirit of aid effectiveness. The UN is very proud to have been part of this initiative!
As you may know, gender assessments have been undertaken in a variety of countries, and they have proven to be an important resource used by a wide range of stakeholders because they bring together available research and data, and provide a “baseline” situation analysis of key gender issues in a country. This is exactly what this new Country Gender Assessment provides for Viet Nam. It also builds on the previous Gender Assessment from 2006 which I know has been used extensively by the UN, donors and other stakeholders.
Since the last Country Gender Assessment was published a lot has changed in this country. Rapid economic growth has accompanied significant social and demographic change: family structures are shifting, millions of people have migrated in search of a better future, new economic opportunities have arisen while other livelihoods are disappearing. These rapid and sometimes dramatic changes in Viet Nam are affecting the lives of men and women and boys and girls very quickly and in a variety of ways.
At the policy level we have also major changes, with the development and approval of the Law on Gender Equality in 2006, the Law Against Domestic Violence in 2007, the National Strategy for Gender Equality in 2010 and most recently the National Programme for Gender Equality in 2011. In this context it is very timely that we have this new Gender Assessment available to us today.
The report does not attempt to cover all of the many very important gender issues in Viet Nam, but instead focuses on three major areas of change over the past five years. These are: “gender, poverty and well being”; “gender and employment”; and “gender and political participation”. Of course, we are conscious that other current and planned research, including research by many of you here today, will look at other key gender issues. However, the focus areas of the Country Gender Assessment were selected because they are central to the work of the World Bank and other donors.
For those of us working in the area of gender equality and women’s empowerment, which cuts across so many policy areas, the 2011 Gender Assessment is an invaluable tool. I hope you will draw on the rich data and the analysis it contains.
The authors also make a series of policy recommendations, and with your contributions today, we will be in a position to strengthen these recommendations and support Viet Nam to continue moving forwards on the path to gender equality.
The United Nations in Viet Nam is committed to continuing our work – in close partnership with Government, the World Bank and other development and civil society partners – for the advancement of women and gender equality.
I look forward to your active participation and useful contributions to this workshop, and to hearing the outcomes of today’s discussion.
Thank you very much.
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