The UAE adopts a visionary, well thought-out strategy founded on farsightedness as far as women's empowerment is concerned, said a report by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.
Marking the Emirati Women's Day, observed on August 28th every year, the ministry said the UAE has been over the past years attaching paramount importance to increasing women's representation in the country's foreign diplomacy, raising the number of national females working at the ministry's premises to 175 in addition to 42 women serving across at the country's diplomatic missions in different world countries.
"Emirati Women's Day is an occasion to commemorate the significant contributions made by Emirati women in areas of politics, economics, social services, science and humanities, translating the prestigious position notched by them across all these fields," added the report.
"These contributions made by Emirati women are attributable to the tremendous support provided by the country's leadership represented by President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum and His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces along with their brothers, members of the Supreme Council, Rulers of the Emirates. It's this wise leadership that has secured the top-notch ranking achieved by Emirati women across different sectors, ensured protection for their rights and enabled them to shoulder their responsibilities in the best possible way as a major contributor to the country's economy.
The report highlighted the pivotal role played by 'Mother of the Nation' Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union, Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation and President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood in fulfilling the vision of late Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan for women's development and empowerment.
"The country has taken strategic steps towards this direction by enacting laws and legislation that ensure full protection of women's constitutional rights, atop of which come the rights of labour, social insurance, ownership and business and financial management besides providing them with all primary services in areas of education, health and social solidarity, sparing no efforts to strengthen gender equality in all walks of life, including equality in wages and end violence against women.
Citing the pro-women initiatives championed and supported by the country over the years, the report mentioned that the UAE has launched "The National Strategy for the Advancement of Women in collaboration with the United Nations in 2002 besides the Law on Personal Status along with solidifying women's rights and contributions across all fields."
The report also pointed to the National Strategy for Empowerment of Emirati Women 2015-2021 , the primary goal of which is to provide women with decent life.
"The UAE has been among the forerunners since the declaration of the UAE Federation in 1971 with regards to strengthening women’s status as Late Sheikh Zayed, God bless his soul, attached from the very beginning central importance to the development of women out of a strong belief in their vital role in the development drive," added the report.
The prestigious position now attained by the Emirati women is translated by their marked representation across all government portfolios, where eight out of 29 ministerial positions are held by Emirati women, a fact which reflects the principle of gender equality adopted by the country and the nation’s strong belief in women’s decision-making skills and capabilities, added the report.
The report also highlighted the distinctive representation enjoyed by women in the Federal National Council where women make up for 22 percent of the FNC members, singling out in this regard the election of Dr Amal Al Qubaisi as the FNC Speaker as among the clear manifestations of women’s empowerment, being the first woman to chair a parliament across all Arab countries.
Women now account for 66 percent of government jobs, 30 percent of which are senior decision-making positions, and 15 percent of technical jobs in areas of medicine, engineering, education, pharmaceuticals, and nursing in addition to police and armed forces occupations, said the report, noting that women now hold 75 percent of jobs in areas of education and health.