‘Greater participation of women in economy can propel sustainable growth’

IFC, DSE & United Nations push for more women in leadership

Published : 14 Mar 2022 08:29 PM

Emphasizing women’s role in shaping a more equal future, experts at an pointed out how greater participation of women in the economy can spur sustainable and inclusive growth.

While emphasizing women’s role in shaping a more equal future, the annual event highlights how greater participation of women in the economy can spur sustainable and inclusive growth.

Celebrating International Women’s Day, IFC partnered with the Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE), UN Women, and United Nations Global Compact for the seventh consecutive year to ‘Ring the Bell for Gender Equality.’ 

Speaking at the event, Nathalie Chuard, the Ambassador of Switzerland to Bangladesh said, “As Bangladesh embarks upon its graduation from the LDC category, ensuring gender equality is all the more critical for a sustainable transition that leaves no one behind. As a committed and longstanding bilateral partner, Switzerland gives particular importance to gender equality and social inclusion in all of its engagements in Bangladesh.”

Tarique Amin Bhuiyan, Managing Director, Dhaka Stock Exchange Limited, Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission said the Dhaka Stock Exchange remained fully committed to closing the gender gap and promoting women’s role in leadership, particularly in listed companies. “Advancing womens’ roles in companies will not only create a more diverse leadership team,but will also serve to help private sector companies create value, bring new ideas, boost transparency and promote inclusive growth,” he said. 

Meanwhile in a new joint report on, “How Exchanges Can Advance Gender Equality: Updated Guidance and Best Practice,” the UN Sustainable Stock Exchanges (SSE)initiative and IFC identify three broad areas where exchanges can play a role in advancing gender equality. These include the promotion of gender-focused and/or gender-aware products and services, strengthening of market performance on gender equality and leading by example. 

‘Investing in women’s economic empowerment is both the right thing to do and the smart thing to do as it sets a direct path towards gender equality, poverty eradication and inclusive economic growth,” said Gitanjali Singh, Head of Office, a.i. UN Women Bangladesh.

IFC's commitment to Ring the Bell initiative is part of its strong focus on gender equality, which includes leveraging relationships with financial institutions to expand access to finance for female entrepreneurs and increase the number of women in leadership roles.

“IFC has long been engaged in efforts at the capital markets level to support women as economic actors,” said Martin Holtmann, IFC Country Manager for Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal. 

“We are well aware that having more women in leadership positions makes economic sense for companies and is also linked to better environmental, social and corporate governance standards and practices. 

It’s why IFC has been working with multiple stakeholders in Bangladesh including the stock exchange, regulators, and companies.”