Skills for Prosperity Programme in Indonesia

Statement at the Webinar: Gender Equality and Women's Empowerment to Prepare Youth Generation in a Diversity of Professions and Organization

By Mary Kent, Chief Technical Advisor of the Skills for Prosperity Programme in Indonesia (SfP-Indonesia), at the webinar organised on 19 February 2021 by PoliMarin (Politeknik Maritim Negeri Indonesia) via ZOOM.

Statement | 20 February 2021
It is an honour to join such a distinguished panel of experts and to welcome you to this event on Gender Equality, Empowering Women and preparing Youth for a diversity of professions.

I would like to start by thanking all of speakers, but especially Dr Ibu Tuti, Director of PoliMarin, a role model as a female leader, and one of our partners in the ILO Skills for Prosperity Programme, for arranging and hosting this important event today.

Gender equity is a global issue. Today, more than 1 billion or 64% girls and young women under 24, lack the key skills they need for life and work. This is an injustice for individuals, but also deprives society from the important skills that women can bring to the labour market.

Economists estimate that if full-parity were established, the global economy would grow by almost $30 trillion dollars. That alone is a growth rate of at least 8% in all parts of the world.

This is the untapped power that our women and girls represent.
In Indonesia, we see gender inequality through

• Much higher levels of female youth unemployment,
• a wide gender pay gap
• a low representation of women in management and leadership roles.

In the pandemic crisis, women have often been at the forefront of the Covid response – as healthcare workers and care givers at home; but female workers have been disproportionately affected through the crisis due to the propensity to be employed in the informal economy and lower-wage, less secure work.

But we know that given the right opportunity girls can flourish and society is improved – education results are favourable, companies that are more gender diverse outperform their peers, society is strengthened.

The mission of the ILO is to promote opportunities for women and men to obtain decent work. Gender and inclusive youth employment are at the heart of this. In Indonesia, the ILO’s 5 year Decent Work Country Programme 2020 - 2025 sets out these commitments through plans on social dialogue on welfare; job creation and youth employment, and enhancing protection of vulnerable groups of workers.

The ILO in Indonesia, will achieves this through political advocacy, and the promotion of labour conventions such as equal remuneration and the elimination of workplace violence and harassment; and it also supports sustainable transformation through working with partners and groups who are ready to be a part of the change.

The ILO Skills for Prosperity Programme, in which PoliMarin is one of our four key polytechnic partners, makes a strong commitment to mainstreaming gender issues within skills development and maritime sector.

PoliMarin and our other polytechnic partners aspire to become a centre of excellence, in providing inclusive high quality skills and education for the maritime sector, but through this project, will also become a Centre of Excellence, in creating a new future: A polytechnic where industry, social partners, community members help to shape the future, and one where girls and young women raise their aspirations to succeed and achieve. Thank you to our speakers and for your valuable support today. We look forward to hearing from our speakers, and being part of building back a stronger and more equitable society where all have opportunities, and no one is left behind.