The most recent update from the Planning and Statistics Authority in Qatar compared female economic participation rate to that of males, and an obvious gender gap is noted in recent years.

Female economic participation rate reached 60.9% of male economic participation. As for the Qatari economic participation rate, there is a clear rise in the participation rate for males compared to females, accounting for 68.2% for males compared to 36.7% for females in 2017. Despite the shrinking gender gap between both genders, disparity still exists, where the female economic participation rate is 53.8% of male participation rate.

The British Council creates international opportunities for the people of the UK and other countries and builds trust between them worldwide. Working effectively in ensuring equal access to opportunities for all individuals is an essential part of this. They are committed to tackling gender discrimination.

In celebration of the International Women’s Day this year, the British Council organised and hosted a panel discussion to discuss the importance of empowering women in the financial sector. Members of the panel included prominent female personalities from Qatar’s financial and sectors.

British Council

The panellists shared their experience of working and studying in the UK and advice for studying and working in finance and business to encourage the younger generation of females to be successful leaders in the field.

The event was held earlier this week at Qatar Banking Studies and Business Administration School for Girls and was attended by Sam Ayton, Director of British Council in Qatar, James Elwes, COO of HSBC Qatar, and at least 100 students from the Qatar Banking Studies and Business Administration School for Girls.

Sam Ayton said they put fairer access to opportunities at the heart of everything they do.

Gender inequality remains one of the most urgent but solvable societal issues around the world; empowerment of women and girls is a priority for the British Council. We had a very inspiring panel who shared their experiences of studying in the UK, working in the finance and business sector and how they had overcome the challenges they had faced as leaders in their fields. It was a perfect place to celebrate IWD with such a fiercely-talented group of girls.

James Elwes added that for HSBC, gender equality in the workforce is a key priority as they too, believe that only an inclusive and diverse workforce can effectively represent the customers that they serve. He said that a diverse team is a key differentiating factor in a very competitive business environment and in Qatar, they are aiming to recruit, retain and develop the best talent for their business.

He also emphasised on their commitment to invest in the best talent in the market, following Qatar National Vision on human capital development.

Principal Dhabya Al Buenain of Qatar Banking Studies and Business Administration School for Girls said they were honoured to host and celebrate the efforts exerted in empowering women in the financial sector and the transformative power of women and girls in Qatar.

She also said that the school is taking part in a variety of initiatives to show its continued support and commitment to gender equality, economic empowerment and female representation and inclusion in the workplace.