The EU would like to thank you for holding this timely Panel discussion. Women are still paying a disproportionate share of the burden resulting from the socio-economic impact of COVID-19. As frontline workers, carers and decision-makers, women areinstrumental in fighting the pandemic and building towards the post-pandemic world.
It is a fact that more women lost more jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic and it is taking longer to them to get them back. In the EU, only one woman for every two men re-entered the job market during the recovery phase. The Recovery and Resilience Facility of the EU, worth 672.5 billion euro, makes it mandatory for Member States to invest in projects that contribute to gender equality. National recovery plans must be gender-responsive becauseeconomic and social recovery is only possible having all women and girls on board.
The current crisis has shown that we need to increase the level of ambition. We seek to halve the gender gap in employment in the next 10 years. The EU is confident that instruments contributing to equal sharing of care responsibilities, transparent pay, fair and decent working conditions, finance inclusiveness and fair pensions will bring many women closer to economic independence and support a fair and inclusive recovery.
Supporting women’s economic empowerment is essential for women’s rights and yields benefits for society on the whole. Estimates show that advancing gender equality will add 11 to 21 trillion euro to the global GDP by 2025. The EU firmly believes that investing in women’s empowerment is investing in a sustainable recovery and future for everyone and everywhere.
I thank you.