gender equality & trade policy

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    I. IntroductionThepurposeof thisResourcePaper*is topresent thecollectiveviewsof theUNsystemonthelinksbetweengenderequalityandtradepolicy.ThePaperprovidesa summary overview of key questions, concerns and policy recommendationswhileproviding reference to relatedUN resolutions,UNofficial documentation,publicationsandwebsites.TheResourcePaperisorganizedasfollows:SectionIIbrieflyreviewstheevolutionoftheinternationaldebateonglobalization,tradeliberalizationandtheirimpactson equitable development, in the context of the United Nations Developmentagendaastheoverarchingframeworkfordevelopment.SectionIIIdwellsupontherelevanceof integrating ormainstreaming genderperspectives in tradepolicyanddiscussestheimplicationsofwomen'seconomicempowermentontradeandeconomic growth. Sections IV analyzes, through a gender lens, some commonlyobserved impactsof international tradeon labourmarketsandsmallbusinesses.Section V addresses the potential of labour mobility as a tool for women'sempowermentinthecontextofinternationalmigrationandinternationaltradeinservices. SectionVI furtherexplains the interrelationshipsbetween tradepolicyand gender equality in agriculture. Section VII reflects upon the impact of thefinancial and economic crisis on women and presents data and examples ofpolicies implemented by governments to address it. Section VIII reviews goodpractices in incorporating gender considerations in trade policy and tradeagreements. Finally, Section IX presents a nonexhaustive list of actionsundertakenbytheUNsystemtosupporttheprocessofmakingtradepolicymoreresponsive to the specificneedsofwomenand instrumental togenderequalityand women's empowerment. The Annex includes UN Resolutions, UN officialdocuments, publications andwebsites on the issues addressed in the ResourcePaper.

    * ThisworkisanoutputoftheInteragencyNetworkonWomenandGenderEquality(IANGWE).UNCTADasmanagerof theIANWGETaskForceonGenderandTradeledandcoordinatedtheinitiative,withsupportfromtheDivisionfortheAdvancementof Women, UN Women as manager of the IANWGE WomenWatch Task Force.Substantiveinputswerereceivedfrom,interalia:theDivisionfortheAdvancementofWomen(UNWomen);theEconomicCommissionforLatinAmericaandtheCaribbean(ECLAC); theEconomic and Social Commission forAsia and thePacific (ESCAP); theFoodandAgricultureOrganization(FAO);theInternationalLabourOrganization(ILO);the InternationalOrganization forMigration (IOM); theUnitedNationsDevelopmentProgramme (UNDP); the United Nations Industrial Development Organization(UNIDO);andtheUnitedNationsFundforWomen(UNIFEM,UNWomen).

    TableofContents

    I.Introduction

    II.GenderEqualityintheContextofGlobalization,TradeLiberalizationandtheUNDevelopmentAgenda

    III.GenderPerspectivesinTradePolicy

    IV.EffectsofTradeonGenderEqualityinLabourMarketsandSmallscaleEnterprises

    V.LabourMobilityandGenderEquality:MigrationandTradeinServices

    VI.Trade,Agriculture,FoodSecurityandGenderEquality

    VII.TheGlobalEconomicCrisisanditsImpactonTradeandGenderEquality

    VIII.ImplementingGenderResponsiveTradePolicies:ObstaclesandGood

    Gender Equality & Trade Policy ResourcePaper,2011

    UnitedNationsInterAgencyNetworkonWomenand

    GenderEquality(IANWGE)

    http://www.un.org/womenwatch/

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    II. Gender Equality in the Context of Globalization, TradeLiberalizationandtheUNDevelopmentAgendaOverthelasttwodecades,tradepolicyinmostcountrieshasbeengearedtowardstradeliberalizationandmarketopening.UnderthepreceptsoftheWashingtonConsensusprevailinginthe1990s,theassumptionwasthatfreetrade,combinedwithliberalizationofinvestments,aderegulationoftheprivatesectorandfinancialsystemsalongwiththeprivatizationofpublicownedenterprisesandserviceswouldfacilitatetheprocessofsustainedeconomicgrowthandthedevelopmentofproductivecapacities.1Inturn,higherlevelsofgrowthandproductivitywouldexpandemploymentopportunitiesandsustain livelihoods forall,menandwomen, giving them the same chances of benefiting frommacroeconomic policies. Trade policy,alongwithothermacroeconomicpolicies,washoweverperceivedasbeing"genderneutral".WiththeadoptionoftheMillenniumDeclarationin2000,thediscourseininternationaldevelopmenthasshiftedemphasis2tothesetofmultilaterallyagreedinternationaldevelopmentgoalstheUnitedNationsDevelopment Agenda3 as an overarching framework for development, of which the MillenniumDevelopmentGoals(MDGs)areacorepart.Withregardstotrade,in2001,theDohaRoundofmultilateraltradenegotiationswaslaunchedwithastrongemphasisondevelopment,whichcontributedtoputunderscrutinytheviewthattradeliberalizationautomaticallyledtoeconomicgrowthanddevelopmentforall.Subsequently,at the InternationalConferenceonFinancing forDevelopment (Monterrey,2002)and theReviewConference inDoha (2009), landmarkglobalagreementswere reachedbetweendevelopedanddeveloping countrieson actions to be taken indomestic resourcemobilization,private resource flows,OfficialDevelopmentAssistance(ODA),trade,debtandgovernanceoftheglobaleconomicsystem.Theycontributed to a common understanding that the benefits of trade for growth, employment andsustainabledevelopmentdependtoalargeextentonthecapacityofacountrytoupgradeanddiversifyitsdomesticproductivecapacitiesandtheproductivityofitslaborforce.UNCTADdefinesproductivecapacityas "the productive resources, entrepreneurial capabilities and production linkages which togetherdeterminethecapacityofacountrytoproducegoodsandservicesandenableittogrowanddevelop".45

    GenderEqualityandtheMillenniumDevelopmentGoals(MDGs)

    WithintheMillenniumDevelopmentGoals(MDGs),MDG1 "Eradicateextremepovertyandhunger" includesagenderspecific target, namely "Achieve, full and productive employment and decent work for all, includingwomenandyoungpeople"(Target1.B).Target1.Bwasincludedin2005inrecognitionthatemploymentanddecentworkarelegitimategoalsintheirownrightandmaynotbeachievedautomaticallyasaresultofeconomicgrowth.Decentwork comprises four interrelated and mutually supportive pillars: employment, rights at work, socialprotectionandsocialdialogue.MDG 3 "Promote gender equality and empowerwomen" does notmake an explicit reference to trade butincludes a specific reference towomen's economic empowerment. UnderMDG3, the indicatoron the shareofwomen inwageemployment innonagriculturalsectorsassessestheextenttowhichwomenare integrated intheeconomythrough remunerated employment in the formal sector. Wage employment is linked to trade sincewomen'sintegrationintoformallabourmarketsisoftentheresultofjobcreationduetotradeexpansion.TheotherindicatorwithinMDG3thatreferstoeliminatinggenderdisparityatalllevelsofeducationisalsoindirectlylinkedtotrade.Womenwhoaremoreeducatedareinabetterpositiontobenefitfromglobalizationandtradeliberalizationbyhaving the skills sought by integrated markets. They are also in a better position to contribute to theeconomicgrowthoftheircountries.MDG 8 "Develop a global partnership for development" promotes cooperation on development assistanceanddebt sustainabilityand the furtherdevelopmentof tradeand financial systems.UnderMDG8, the indicatorsthatrefer to ensuring market access for developing and least developed countries, especially for agriculturalproducts,textiles and clothing, have an indirect gender component sincewomen represent a high share of theworkforceinthosesectors.6AnotherindicatorofMDG8Accesstoessentialdrugsaffectswomensaccesstohealthandgreatlydependsontradearrangementsandissuesofintellectualpropertyrights.Similarly,theMDG8indicatorrelated touniversalaccess tonew informationandcommunication technologiescontainsbothgenderrelatedandtraderelateddimensions.

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    III. GenderPerspectivesinTradePolicy

    Theimpactoftradepolicyonwomenseconomicempowermentandwellbeing

    Theeffectoftradepolicyoneconomicandsocialactivitiestendtobedifferentbetweenmenandwomenastheyhavedifferenteconomicandsocialrolesanddifferentaccesstoandcontroloverresources,duetosociocultural, political and economic factors.Women tend to bemore affected by the negative sideeffectsoftradeliberalizationandarefacingbiggerchallengesthanmenwhenitcomestotakingadvantageoftheopportunitiestradeoffers.Thissituation isduetogenderbiases ineducationandtraining,genderinequalities in the distribution of income and command over resources, aswell as unequal access toproductiveinputssuchascredit,land,andtechnology,whichtranslateintosignificantgenderdifferencesinoccupationaldistribution.7Preexistinggender imbalancesatthemacro,mesoandmicro levelsdeterminethedifferential impactoftradeonwomenandmen,girlsandboys.Such impactscanbebestconsideredatthefollowing levelsofanalysis:(a)thesectorlevel,inwhichtradecanaugmentorreduceemploymentandincomeopportunitiesforwomen,dependingonwhetherthesectorswherewomenwork,expandorcontractasaresultoftradeliberalization and import competition (see section IV below); (b) the governmental level,where fiscalrevenues and public expenditures modified by trade liberalization in accordance to the relativeimportanceof tariff revenues ingovernment financing havean impactonpublic investments in socialinfrastructureandservices thatparticularlybenefitwomen,suchashealth,education,electricity,water,sanitation and other infrastructure to meet household needs; and (c) the household level, whereexpendituresmaydecreaseorexpandaccordingtotheeffectsoftradeonconsumergoodsprices.8For example, trade liberalizationmay benefit poor consumers, includingwomen in their role as familyproviders and caregivers, ifprice reductions (through thedismantlingor the reductionof tariffs) affectimportedproducts that represent a relevantpartof thehousehold consumptionbasket.9On theotherhand, trade liberalizationcandisrupteconomicsectorsandmarketswherewomenareactive,deprivingthemofemploymentopportunities andpushing them towards the informal sector.Trade liberalizationincreases internationalcompetition.Whilethismaybringmoreopportunitiesfor individualsandfirms, italso