Gender Equality Has the Potential to Increase Indonesia’s GDP by 135 Billion US Dollars in 2025

Gender equality, Gender Equality Has the Potential to Increase Indonesia’s GDP by 135 Billion US Dollars in 2025

Gender equality has the potential to increase Indonesia’s GDP by 135M US Dollars. The report from McKinsey entitled “The Power of Parity: Advancing Women’s Equality in Asia Pacific“ states that if Indonesia can foster gender equality in the world of work, then Indonesia has the opportunity to reap sweet fruit in 2025 in the form of an increase in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by 135 billion US Dollars. Increasing the participation of women’s workforce, especially the number of full-time workers and workers in productive sectors such as manufacturing, has the opportunity to provide Indonesia with economic opportunities and earn an additional 9% of GDP.

According to government data, 39 percent of the workforce are women. However, women only contribute 29 percent of GDP. This participation rate has barely changed over the past 20 years.

Seeing economic opportunities that are actually beneficial not only for the country, but also for individuals, women should be moved to enter the world of work. Then, what do women need to do to struggle in the world of work? First, women need to be brave and confident that they can’t compete with men. The notion that women cannot get certain positions (for example because they are considered to deviate from their original or natural roles) must be removed. If they try, women can also be successful in their careers, for example Oprah Winfrey, Shonda Rhimes and from Indonesia there are Sri Mulyani, Susi Pudjiastuti, Merry Riana, Miriam Budiarjo and many other inspiring examples.

Second, women should not give up on getting an education and developing themselves. Currently, women’s access to education is better. Therefore, this access needs to be utilized. In addition to formal education, women can develop themselves semi-informally or informally. For example by attending training and utilizing the development of internet technology for learning.

Third, try to balance between personal, social and work life. Think of it as a challenge, not a burden. Fourth, strengthen networking with other female workers. Establishing good relationships with people who are going through the same way as you can provide support. Also, don’t hesitate to learn from other women who have succeeded.

Fifth, dare to fight gender discrimination. The struggle to achieve gender equality does not end when women get jobs, but also concerns the treatment they receive at work. Gender-based harassment, both physical and non-physical, must be opposed. When receiving abuse, silence does not mean ‘golden’. The way that can be taken is to report the unfair action to the authorities. If necessary, see a counselor to minimize the traumatic effects.

Government and Private Support

Women’s efforts alone are indeed not enough, especially when women have to deal with systemic obstacles. To achieve gender equality, the government and the private sector need to encourage women’s participation in the world of work. Strengthening legal protection, increasing training in digital skills and entrepreneurship for women and campaigning to change traditional views of women’s roles in society are examples of this.

Strengthening legal protections, especially by including part-time work in formal policies, can provide flexible employment options over working in the informal sector.

During the presentation, the Main Director of McKinsey Indonesia, Phillia Wibowo, emphasized that what women are looking for today is flexibility – not having to be in an office. Flexibility allows women to fulfill a variety of responsibilities.

The entrepreneurial spirit is also a driving force for the Indonesian economy. The state has to overcome barriers related to finance and the traditional view that businesses run by women are only “addition” to the opinions of their spouses.

Transportation and household infrastructure such as clean water, sanitation and clean cooking fuel are also important (women doing housework) to facilitate women’s access to employment.

Parrish & Co.

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