Workshop of UNESCO Summer Academy on Women’s Empowerment for Sustainable Development, Istanbul

Mexico - 4 September 2019

Trade topics: Trade and Development

The eleventh WTO Ministerial Conference witnessed 118 Members and observers coming together to sign the Joint Declaration on Trade and Women’s Economic Empowerment. The Declaration reaffirms that ‘international trade and investment are engines of economic growth for both developing and developed countries, and that improving women's access to opportunities and removing barriers to their participation in national and international economies contributes to sustainable economic development’. The aim is to build a framework that will guide Members to adapt or adopt gender-responsive trade policies that will eliminate barriers to trade for women and hence increase their participation in trade. Even though it is a non-binding declaration, it marks a starting point to future deliberations and discussions on how trade can accommodate gender justice concerns. 
The two-hour long workshop will be divided in two parts. The first part will focus on identifying and discussing various financial, legal, regulatory and cultural barriers that women face to access trade and commerce. The second part will focus on how new generation trade agreements are trying to demolish these barriers and create a gender-responsive trade environment.