UNIDO ITPO Tokyo organized a webinar titled “Women’s Empowerment and SDG Goal 9: Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure” on 20 May 2021. The speakers were from The Asahi Shimbun and HINODESANGYO CO.,LTD (water treatment), both of which are focusing on the promotion of SDGs, as well as Africa Advisor (Senegal) in UNIDO ITPO Tokyo. They exchanged knowledge and experiences on the current situation of women in developing countries and efforts to improve the status of women through industrial development.
*Note: no simultaneous interpretation for the above recording
The theme of this event questioned why women’s empowerment is significant in achieving the SDGs Goal 9: Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure. The panel discussion was moderated by Ms. Mamiko Takahashi, Editor-in-Chief of “SDGs ACTION!“, a website launched by the Asahi Shimbun last year. She presented data showing that Global GDP would increase by more than 25% by 2025 if women played the same role as men in the labor market. The success of women is highly important not only for realizing women’s rights but also for economic development, she added.
Ms. Aïssatou NDIAYE, an Africa Advisor (Senegal) at UNIDO ITPO Tokyo who supports business development of Japanese companies in Africa, pointed out that the lack of higher educational opportunities for women has hindered their access to finance, markets, and land; and women’s power in the workforce has been wasted. She emphasized that it is important for people at all levels to be aware of this issue first to improve women’s economic empowerment.
In response to such a situation in developing countries, Ms. Kaori Fujita, Director of HINODESANGYO CO.,LTD (water treatment), explained the company’s active recruitment of young women from developing countries as interns. She mentioned that it is essential to provide women with the opportunity to take on leadership roles and build their confidence, even in small projects. She introduced cases such as that of former young interns who started their own business in South Africa or non-profit organization in Sudan to solve local problems.
Citing a business case of a Japanese company in rural Senegal where women had access to education through the internet, Ms. Aïssatou said that Japanese companies have the know-how to incorporate the principles of women’s empowerment into their business and can provide guidance to developing countries. When a participant asked how to change men’s attitudes, the speakers concluded the event with important notes that diversifying female role models active in society and holding dialogues with men are significant.
Date: Thursday 20 May, 2021
Time: 17:00 – 18:00 (JST) / 8:00 – 9:00 (GMT)
Organizer: UNIDO ITPO Tokyo
Language: Japanese/English (Simultaneous interpretation)
17:00 Opening Remarks
Dr. Yuko Yasunaga, Head, UNIDO ITPO Tokyo
Ms. Mamiko Takahashi, SDGs ACTION! Editor in Chief, The Asahi Shimbun Company
Ms. Kaori Fujita, Director, HINODESANGYO CO.,LTD (water treatment)
Ms. Aïssatou NDIAYE, Africa Advisor (Senegal), UNIDO ITPO Tokyo
17:20 Panel Discussion / Q&A Session
*Moderator: Ms. Takahashi, SDGs ACTION! Editor in Chief, The Asahi Shimbun Company
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