Turkey's huge gender gap requires government action in 2019 

The Turkish government is trying to inspire female entrepreneurs by providing loans to women who are willing to set up their own business. 

Ans Boersma
Ans Boersma NewsMavens, Turkey
Turkey's huge gender gap requires government action in 2019  - NewsMavens
Women working, Turkey

Why this story matters:

"Women-led businesses in Turkey flourish with state-sponsored loans", reports Daily Sabah, a Turkish pro-government daily. 

Yes, there are signs of initiative in Turkey when it comes to closing the gender gap in labor force participation, but there is a huge gap to close.

Turkey ranks 130th in the 2018 World Economic Forum (WEF) gender gap index out of 149 countries. Only 33.1% of women between 15 and 64 are employed. “Turkey also experiences a worsening of wage equality for similar work”, says the Global Gender Gap Report, released in December 2018. 

The report also states that must Turkey improve the number of women in parliament.

The Turkish government is trying to encourage women to participate in the upcoming elections. Women are receiving a discount on the entrance fee to run for local elections. Yet this measurement is not effective yet: out of 1,307 candidates announced by the political parties for the local elections so far, only 56 are women.

Details from the story:

  • "In recent years, the [Turkish] government rolled out a series of incentives for working women, from longer maternity leaves to financial support for daycare needs, as well as payments to grandparents caring for their grandchildren with working parents."
  • These initiatives are especially necessary in the southeastern provinces of Turkey, among the rural, poorer population of the country. 
  • Zehra Demir is one of the women who benefits from the loans. "I am proud to earn money for my family. I have no trouble running the business. I advise all women to be brave and take a risk," she said.
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