G20 EMPOWER 2023 under India’s presidency

Feb 10: The G20 Alliance for the Empowerment and Progression of Women’s Economic Representation (EMPOWER) is an alliance of G20 business leaders and governments that aims to accelerate women’s leadership and empowerment in the private sector.

The Vision of G20 EMPOWER is to “Be the most inclusive and action-driven alliance among businesses and Governments to accelerate women’s leadership and empowerment across the G20 countries”.

India’s G20 Presidency is inclusive, equitable, ambitious, decisive and action-oriented pushing forward transformative changes for women’s economic empowerment.
The G20 EMPOWER 2023 under India’s presidency is prioritizing the shift from women’s development to women-led development. It aims to transform challenges into opportunities accelerating the shift towards women-led entrepreneurship and greater inclusion of women in the workforce.

The Ministry of Women and Child Development is India’s nodal ministry for G20 EMPOWER. Dr Sangita Reddy, Joint Managing Director, Apollo Hospitals Enterprises Ltd. is the Chair of EMPOWER 2023 during India’s G20 Presidency. Under India’s G20 Presidency, EMPOWER will host three meetings in February, April, and June 2023 at Agra, Thiruvananthapuram and Bhopal respectively.

The consensus that emerges from the thematic discussions in these meetings would form part of the Communique for the G20 EMPOWER 2023 and would be provided as recommendations to the G20 leaders.

G20 EMPOWER 2023 will focus on women’s entrepreneurship, as a win-win for equity and the economy; creating a partnership for promoting women’s leadership at grass root levels and on education, as a game-changing pathway for women’s empowerment. Digital skilling will be a cross-cutting theme across the three focus areas.

The inception meeting scheduled on 11th-12th February at Agra, Uttar Pradesh will welcome women leaders from G20 nations, guest countries, international organisations and the private sector. The theme of the meeting is “Empowering Women to Lead across Sectors: Role of Digital Skilling and Future Skills”.

Honourable Minister of Women & Child Development and Minority Affairs, Smt. Smriti Zubin Irani will grace the Inception Meeting and will share her valuable insights on women-led development at the opening session. Minister Irani had reaffirmed India’s commitment towards addressing gender and women-centric issues through mutual cooperation at the first-ever G20 Ministerial on Women’s Empowerment in Italy. At the G20 Women’s Ministerial in Bali, Hon’ble Minister shared the “transformative” measures taken by India to leverage technology leading to the holistic development of women and India’s journey of transitioning from women’s development to women-led development. At the closing plenary of G20 EMPOWER 2022 in Bali Indonesia, the Hon’ble Minister underlined the need for bridging the digital gender gap and increasing participation of women in STEM, AI and future skills.
Hon’ble Minister of State for Ministry of Women & Child Development and Ayush, Dr Munjapara Mahendrabhai will also enlighten the august gathering on women’s empowerment initiatives in India.

India’s G20 Sherpa Shri Amitabh Kant will be sharing his thoughts on EMPOWER 2023 as India’s G20 Sherpa. Secretary, Ministry of Women & Child Development, Shri Indevar Pandey, senior officers from the G20 Secretariat, Government of India and State Government of Uttar Pradesh will also be present at the inception meeting.
The discussions at the G20 EMPOWER Inception, spread over two days will set the context for successive meetings and influence what the future holds for women at all strata. The highlights during these dialogues would include redefining women’s leadership through digital skilling; community leadership at the grassroots; enhancing women’s participation in the non-traditional workforce; adopting best practices for women-led entrepreneurship, etc.
Efforts of the G20 EMPOWER are an important step towards galvanising women-centric policies across G20 countries. Closing the digital gender gap is imperative, fostering digital gender inclusion and addressing the root causes of this divide will accelerate progress.
An exhibition will run concurrently during the event to showcase the work of women-led micro-enterprises, women artisans and crafts persons from various States. The exhibition will also highlight women’s contribution at the grassroots in the fields of health, financial inclusion, digital skilling, etc.

In addition, the G20 EMPOWER Inception meeting will have cultural and musical interludes and programmes including visits to historical monuments, showcasing the heritage of Uttar Pradesh. Early morning yoga sessions are planned for the delegates; local cuisine and millet-based food will also be served during the events for participants to experience the traditional practices and fine cuisine of India.

At the time of taking over the chairpersonship of G20 EMPOWER Indonesia, Dr Sangita Reddy, Chair of G20 EMPOWER emphasized that achieving gender parity in labour force participation and the G20 agenda of achieving “25 by 25” is a significant milestone that we need to pursue. She urged all women who have held positions of power and men who understand the value of gender equity to step forward and help build an equitable world with collaborative and concerted action. Education, training, digital skilling, sustainable financing and equal pay for equal work are some of the factors that will drive women’s employment, enhance entrepreneurship and help build a developed nation in the “Amrit Kaal (golden age)”.
The website of the G20 EMPOWER will act as the information and resource centre for all EMPOWER activities and on focus areas during India’s G20 Presidency. The aim of the website is to take the EMPOWER message to the people – “Yatra Naryastu Pujyante Ramante Tatra Devata” or When Women are Honoured, Divinity Blossoms there.

Taking forward this cultural and civilisation ethos, India believes that the gender agenda is urgent and must take centre stage. The G20 EMPOWER 2023 under India’s presidency promises to be a catalyst to create an ecosystem for empowering women, supporting their aspirations and creating substantive opportunities for women and girls across G20 countries.

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