The rate of female entrepreneurship in the Euro-Mediterranean region below the world average
- The first report of the Intergovernmental Monitoring Mechanism on Gender Equality in the UfM Member States is now available.
- Europe and the MENA region are below the 6.2% global percentage of women entrepreneurs who own established businesses (5.3% and 4.5% respectively).
- In the EU, women represent 57.7% of tertiary graduates, yet for now they represent only 2 out of 5 scientists and engineers
March 7th, 2022. The Union for the Mediterranean (UfM) has published the results of the first Report on Gender Equality in the Euro-Mediterranean region, launched in 2020 upon the unanimous approval of an intergovernmental follow-up mechanism to evaluate the gender gap, monitor progress and provide data for scientific-based policy recommendations to decision-makers.
According to the report, Europe and the MENA region are below the 6.2% global average of female entrepreneurs who own established businesses (5.3% and 4.5%, respectively). These regions also have the lowest percentages of nascent women-owned enterprises (3.4% and 4.1% respectively, compared to the global average of 5.5%), representing the largest gender gaps worldwide. Despite strong variations amongst countries, entrepreneurship in the Euro-Mediterranean region continues to bear a male face, with countries like Portugal and Croatia leading the ranking nowadays with only 37.2% and 31.5% of female entrepreneurs, respectively.
Women’s economic empowerment continues to represent one of the regional priorities. Despite initial progress, the COVID-19 crisis has had a retroceding effect on the economic situation of women and has clearly demonstrated a need for stronger commitment from the countries to protect women’s rights. Women’s increasing participation in public life can be clearly observed, but, in terms of economic leadership women continue to struggle to break the glass ceiling.
The UfM Deputy Secretary General, John Paul Grech: “We need to continue examining both the opportunities as well as the constraints in the Euro-Mediterranean region, to empower women and girls to have a voice and a decision-making role, in both the private and public sphere. Without an accurate assessment of the situation, it is impossible to adopt efficient measures. The UfM Member countries acknowledged the need to include gender in all data gathering processes and, equally, the urgent need to harmonize data collection methods among all Member States.”
In 2020, the UfM Member States launched the first-ever Intergovernmental Monitoring Mechanism on Gender Equality in the Euro-Mediterranean region. After extensive consultations, a set of 20 indicators across 4 priority areas were agreed (see INFOGRAPHIC). A regular monitoring exercise will allow to publish progress reports every two years in order to measure the progress made in women’s rights and to provide policy recommendations for gender-based policies at country and regional levels.