Taiwan top-ranked country in Asia for gender equality: DGBAS
Taipei, Feb. 18 (CNA) Taiwan ranks first in Asia and eighth worldwide in terms of gender equality, mainly due to its higher female participation in politics, the Directorate-General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) said Monday.
The DGBAS came up with the rankings using the criteria in the Gender Inequality Index (GII) introduced by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in 2010.
The GII is a composite index that measures the inequality between female and male achievements in three areas, namely reproductive health, empowerment, and the labor market.
It ranges from 0, which indicates that women and men fare equally, to 1, which indicates that women fare as poorly as possible in all the measured dimensions.
Since Taiwan is not a member of the U.N. it is not ranked in the GII. Using the criteria used in the index, however, the DGBAS calculated Taiwan's score in 2017 at 0.056, placing it at eighth around the globe and number one in Asia.
In the UNDP's 2017 GII, Sweden was ranked first among 160 countries with a score of 0.039, followed by Denmark with 0.040, and Switzerland and the Netherlands tied in third place with 0.044.
In terms of empowerment, Taiwan's female participation in politics has been on the rise, the DGBAS said.
Women held 38.1 percent of the parliamentary seats in Taiwan in 2017, up 16.9 percentage points from 2007, and the female-to-male ratio in parliamentary participation was higher than in other Asian countries, including Singapore, China, South Korea and Japan, according to the DGBAS.
Meanwhile, the labor force participation rate in Taiwan for women aged 15 and over was 50.9 percent in 2017, 16.2 percentages points lower than that for men. Taiwan's gender gap in that area was smaller than Singapore, Japan and South Korea, the DGBAS said.
Furthermore, women took 16.7 percent of the mayor seats in Taiwan's six special municipalities in the November 2018 local elections, the same as in the 2014 elections, the DGBAS said.
In the other 16 cities and counties, women held 37.5 percent of the mayor and magistrate seats, up 31.2 percentage points from 2014 and marking the first time the rate went past one-third since 1997, the DGBAS said.
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