UN official calls for harnassing women's stake

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New Delhi, Feb 27 (UNI) A senior United Nations official has called for recognising and harnassing women's stake in the process of trade, growth and development to make globalisation inclusive.

Speaking at International Conference on ''Moving towards gender sensitisation of trade policy'' organised by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development here, UNCTAD Secretary-General Dr Supachai Panitchpakdi said women's groups must be consulted in a systematic and structured manner in the formulation of trade policies or negotiating positions so as to integrate the gender dimension.

Quoting a new study on the impact of trade and globalisation on gender in India, he said women are significant stakeholders in the process of trade, growth and development. ''This must be recognised and harnessed by the government to make globalisation more inclusive with pro-poor impact.'' Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment Meira Kumar, in her inaugural address at the three-day conference, which concluded today, said equitable distribution of gains from trade among genders is a development objective which needs to be addressed through trade policies and trade agreements.

The conference called for women empowerment through trade in India and other developing countries. It said a gender-sensitive approach to trade must involve a vision of trade as an integral component of wider development efforts to eradicate poverty and promote inclusive, people-centered development.

It suggested a strong and direct relationship between trade performance, gender empowerment and development. It called for explicit and specific attention to gender issues in policy and operational actions, as also in attitudes for maximising the gains for gender empowerment through trade.

The conference provided a forum for Indian and international trade and gender experts to discuss and raise awareness on trade performance and gender linkages in India and globally and propose actions and directions towards enhanced and more effective gender sensitisation of trade policy.

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