When it comes to empowering Sri Lankan women in economic terms, there are no one-size-fits-all solutions. It is important to look at the differences in women’s needs and priorities from different settings, in order to introduce more effective development efforts. On International Women’s Day, this blog analyses the issues faced by rural and urban women and discusses ways in which these women can be empowered using a variety of strategies.
Over 75% of the world’s total unpaid care work is done by women. However, this work is largely excluded from national income accounts and macro-economic statistics. This has led to significant gaps in economic policymaking, both in Sri Lanka and around the world. This blog argues that recognizing, reducing and redistributing unpaid care work is vital to fostering economic growth, and closing gender gaps in the labour market.
Improving Sri Lanka’s female labour force participation has been an issue troubling policymakers in the recent past. Most solutions to this problem are concerned with helping women to balance work-life activities. This blog shows that low female labour force participation is more an issue for low skilled females. The labour force participation of higher skilled females is on par with that of males. As such, this blog argues that better education and better jobs will also encourage more females to enter the workforce.
While Sri Lanka has been performing impressively with regard to human development, especially in terms of health and education, there are still a few major concerns that need urgent attention. This article by Wimal Nanayakkara examines the ways in which these concerns can be addressed to achieve better levels of human development and living standards.
The apparel industry has been a key contributor of the Sri Lankan economy and a major job creator for women over the years. However, there is an increasing difficulty in recruiting women into the industry, especially at the lower levels, leading to a crippling labour shortage in the industry. This article by Sunimalee Madurawala examines the key reasons behind the issue and gives policy recommendations to attract women to the apparel sector.