Italian/Tunisian Event to Promote Economic Empowerment for Rural Women in the MENA Region
The governments of Italy and Tunisia organized an event that aims to promote economic empowerment of rural women in the MENA region. This was in cooperation with the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), UN Women and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
The event featured a range of high-level speakers from Italy, the MENA region, UN agencies and non-governmental organizations. It was moderated by Omar Hilale, Permanent Representative of the Kingdom of Morocco to the United Nations in New York. “Women face several barriers to their equal participation in the social, economic, and political spheres, and these constraints are felt even more harshly by rural women” stated Hilale in his opening remarks.
In a similar manner, the importance of integrating women into the political system was stressed by Neziha Laabidi, Minister of Women, Family, and Childhood of the Government of Tunisia, who also highlighted the inclusion of women in Tunisia’s national, multi-sectoral strategy.
Teresa Bellanova, Deputy Minister of Economic Development of Italy, drew attention to Italy’s commitment to promoting women’s rights and gender equality and to supporting women entrepreneurs and capacity-building at the local level in light of the radical, recent economic and geographical changes shaping the MENA region’s reality.
The event was held on the sidelines of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW), an annual two-week session at the United Nations in New York. The CSW is the principal global intergovernmental body exclusively dedicated to the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of women.