UAE ranks 5th globally in IPU’s ‘Women in Parliament 2023’ report

Global efforts and quotas propel gender representation in parliaments
UAE ranks 5th globally in IPU’s ‘Women in Parliament 2023’ report
Women now constitute 27.6 percent of members of parliament in newly elected or appointed chambers

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has secured the fifth position in the latest ‘Women in Parliament 2023’ report released by the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU). The report, based on parliamentary renewals across 66 chambers in 52 countries, highlights the UAE’s commitment to achieving gender parity in its parliamentary representation. Alongside Andorra and Mexico, the UAE stands as a beacon of gender equality, with women holding an equal share of seats in its parliamentary chambers.

Global trends

Rwanda leads the IPU’s ‘Women in Parliament 2023’ report with women accounting for 61.3 percent of seats in the Chamber of Deputies. In second place comes Cuba with 55.7 percent while Nicaragua ranks third with 53.9 percent. Meanwhile, Andorra, Mexico, and the UAE have parity, the report said.

The ‘Women in Parliament 2023’ report indicates a global upward trend in women’s representation in parliamentary chambers. Women now constitute 27.6 percent of members of parliament (MPs) in newly elected or appointed chambers. This marks a 1.4 percentage point increase compared to 2022. The global proportion of women MPs has reached 26.9 percent, reflecting a steady growth rate of 0.4 percent, albeit slower than in preceding years.

Challenges and progress

The ‘Women in Parliament 2023’ report reveals that gender issues have taken center stage in many elections, amidst a backdrop of resistance against women’s rights in some nations. The report highlights the departure of several prominent women from politics, citing burnout and threats as contributing factors. Despite challenges, the Americas lead in women’s representation, with women accounting for 42.5 percent of all MPs, the highest regional percentage, elected or appointed in renewed chambers in 2023. Thus, the region maintains its position as the region with the highest representation of women in the world, at 35.1 percent.

Role of quotas

Well-designed and implemented quotas play a pivotal role in bolstering women’s representation. The ‘Women in Parliament 2023’ report revealed that chambers with quotas elected an average of 28.8 percent women MPs, compared to 23.2 percent in countries without quotas. This underscores the effectiveness of quota systems in promoting gender diversity in parliamentary bodies.

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Regional progress

Sub-Saharan Africa demonstrated significant improvement, recording a 3.9 percentage point increase in women’s representation compared to previous elections. The ‘Women in Parliament 2023’ report observed notable gains in countries like Benin, Eswatini, and Sierra Leone, facilitated by the implementation of quotas.

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