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New IPU report: More women in parliament and more countries with gender parity | India News

BATHINDA: The global proportion of women parliamentarians has increased by 0.6 percentage points to 26.1% according to the latest IPU report “Women in Parliament 2021”. This corresponds to the progress observed over the past two years. The increase can largely be attributed to the critical role played by quotas for women.
In the 48 countries that held parliamentary elections in 2021, women candidates won 28.6% of the new seats, a cumulative improvement of 2.1 percentage points over previous elections. Five countries now have gender parity or a higher proportion of women in parliament, up from three in 2020, with Mexico and Nicaragua joining Cuba, Rwanda and the United Arab Emirates, according to a statement released by the Inter-Parliamentary Union on Friday. , a worldwide organization of national parliaments.
He said the progress, however, was not shared evenly across the world. While many countries, like Cabo, have made progress, others, like Algeria, have experienced setbacks. In others like Japan and Tonga, the low representation of women in parliament persists. In two out of six regions, countries holding elections in 2021 have declined compared to previous elections.
The President of the IPU’s Bureau of Women Parliamentarians, Lesia Vasylenko, said: “Each woman elected brings parliaments closer to a more inclusive and representative process. But progress is still far too slow, with half of the world’s population still underrepresented. There is an urgent need to remedy this in order to strengthen democracy everywhere.
IPU President Duarte Pacheco said: “If there is one success story that has been evident during the COVID-19 pandemic, it is that women leaders have been very successful in mitigating the impact of the virus on people’s health and life. More women in parliaments means post-pandemic leaders will be more mindful of everyone. We cannot afford the momentum to slow down to elect more women to parliament.
The IPU Secretary General, Martin Chungong said, “Despite uneven progress around the world, 2021 has been full of positive examples of women stepping up to claim their place in politics. However, we can and must do much more. We cannot achieve gender parity without men and women working together. And we know what works: we need strong laws and policies, gender-sensitive institutions and a safe political space.
The women atthe top
In 2021, 73 new speakers were elected in all chambers around the world. Only 18 of them, or 24.7%, were women. Overall, as of January 1, 2022, women made up 22% of Speakers of Parliament, up from 20.9% a year ago, the report said.
The IPU report shows that although there are now female speakers in all regions, their share varies considerably from region to region. The Americas have the highest representation of women at the speaker level, at 35.2%, followed by Europe at 28.6%.
In the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and Pacific regions, however, each region has only one female speaker, a share of 4.2% and 6.3% respectively.
Two countries elected women presidents for the first time in their history: Xiomara Castro de Zelaya in Honduras and Samiha Suluhu in Tanzania. And Samoa elected Naomi Mata’afa as its first female prime minister, a milestone not just for Samoa, but for the entire Pacific region, according to the report.
Good quotas continue to make the difference
As seen in previous years, quotas are one of the most critical success factors for increasing women’s representation. Of the 30 countries that had some form of single/lower chamber quota in place by 2021, 31.9% of elected MPs were women, compared to 19.5% in countries with no form of quota.
In upper houses, 29.1% of elected MPs in the four countries that apply some form of quotas were women, compared to 23.9% in countries without such affirmative action.
However, quotas alone cannot facilitate greater representation of women. The ISU report stresses that it is equally important to have clear, well-drafted rules with enforcement mechanisms in place.
Progress remains intermittent in 2021
Again, the Americas region recorded the highest share of female representation, with 39.1% of MPs elected or appointed in 2021 being women. Peru’s 13.8% improvement leads the Americas, contributing to the region’s overall improvement of 3.7 percentage points from previous polls.
At 30.4%, the European region had the second highest proportion of women elected in 2021. The increase of 4.2 percentage points represents the largest improvement of any region.
In sub-Saharan Africa, 29.2% of elected or appointed MPs were women, an improvement of 3 percentage points compared to previous elections.
In Asia, the share of women increased by 0.8 percentage points. Overall, 21.1% of MPs elected or appointed in 2021 were women. The share has barely improved in recent years, rising by just 0.3 percentage points from 2020 to 20.7% of all MPs.

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