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Das Gupta contributes to Azerbaijan "National Action Plan" to ensure gender equality

Solving skewed sex ratio ameliorates social tensions, may bring economic benefits

Leman Zeynalova interviewed Faculty Associate Monica Das Gupta for Trend regarding the 2019-2022 National Action Plan (NAP) for Azerbaijan on prevention of and response to sex selection abortions addressed to ensure gender equality. Her recommendations were directed toward actions points based on data and research, communication and advocacy, policies and laws, and social protection interventions. “It is really important to have an Action Plan, because that way you can have a road map for action and intervention to address the gender problems. With this kind of a road map you have a coherent set of policies that you can pursue and take some sustainable efforts for achieving more balanced sex ratio,” she said. In relation to the consequences that can emerge of the skewed sex ratio, Das Gupta highlights that there will be a shortage of women for men to marry and a population decline that will affect several areas of development, “If you have 13 percent more boys born, then you are going to have 13 percent fewer brides available. So that leads to major problems, which we see already in China. Such issues include trafficking of women, child marriages […] If you have 13 percent fewer women then you get shortage of the labor force”.

Finally, Das Gupta mentioned South Korea as a country that has managed to solve the skewed sex ratio issue yielding positive results for gender equality, “South Korea […] adopted many gender equality programs. Not necessarily because the [then] new president was interested in gender equality, but because he was interested in economic development. Women were brought into schools, factories to work, they got jobs. […] They also changed the family law, so that women have more rights to inherit, more rights in the case of divorce, custody over children, women also could be the head of household, now it doesn’t have to be a man” she concluded.  

See the complete Trend article