Under the patronage of H. E Nayfah al Zaben, member of the Jordanian House of Senate and Chair of the women’s committee, the Business Development Center – BDC, launched officially the “Gender Mainstreaming in Jordan’s Industrial Sector ” program which is being assisted by the German Government via the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH.
The program aims at supporting the efforts of industrial enterprises in enhancing gender equality practices and improving their key performance indicators. This will be achieved by building the capabilities of the human resources department and selecting a team from the company to follow up on improving and enhancing the work environment.
The program will focus on evaluating and analyzing the currents situation, raising awareness on increasing women’s participation in the work environment, and then building the process through clear indicators enhance the competencies and women participation through specialized experts and based on the information provide to the experts.
The program offers an opportunity for the participating industrial enterprises after concluding the evaluation and training to apply for competent and accredited authorities to obtain a gender audit certificate, as the company will be ready for those standards.
The event hosted decision makers and HR managers from various sectors (textile, pharmaceutical, chemical, food processing, and packaging) attended the session and were introduced to the gender equality concepts and program services.
HE Ms. Naifeh Al-Zaben highlighted the importance of incorporating women into the labor force in the industrial sector for the different skills and benefits women bring to the workplace. Ms. Al-Zaben also emphasized that all recent studies have shown that the financial performance of firms improves with more gender-equal corporate boards. In other words, adding more women to the labor force and at different managerial levels should bring more significant economic gains at all economic levels. HE Ms. Naifeh Al-Zaben said that women, with the new skills they could bring to the workplace, will provide a boost to growth. She stressed that closing the gender gap could increase the country’s economic development and GDP growth.
Ghaleb Hijazi, the General Manager of BDC highlighted in his remarks BDC’s contribution to gender equality and women participation in economy development since establishment were 50% of the BDC program beneficiaries are women, adding the importance of partnering with the industrial sector to increase women participation. He also thanked the German Government and GIZ GmbH for supporting such an important initiative while also emphasizing the importance of cooperation between public sectors, private sectors and supporting agencies towards increasing women participation in all the economic aspects by equipping sectors with the needed tools and process.
It is worth noting that the Center for Business Development is a Jordanian non-profit organization founded in 2004. It aims to contribute to social and economic development by designing and implementing specialized programs to support youth towards employment and self-employment, in addition to entrepreneurship programs and support programs for small and medium-sized enterprises, focusing on supporting women to increase their contribution to economic and social development.