World Bank, OECD call for $13 billion a year to tackle gender inequality and expansion of Millenium Development Goal beyond education

The World Bank and OECD have added up the figures and found it will cost $13 billion a year to meet the gender equality and women’s empowerment part of the Millenium Development Goals.

Gender equality is the Millenium Development Goal 3:

Eliminate gender disparity in primary and secondary education, preferably by 2005, and in all levels of education no later than 2015

3.1 Ratios of girls to boys in primary, secondary and tertiary education

3.2 Share of women in wage employment in the non-agricultural sector

3.3 Proportion of seats held by women in national parliament

But the only “official indicator” is the one on education. Even the World Bank and OECD agree this is not enough:

Since the official indicator of MDG3 to “eliminate gender disparity in primary and secondary education, preferably by 2005, and at all levels of education no later than 2015,” has been criticized as overly narrow, the report suggests the use of a “MDG3 plus” approach.

The “MDG3 plus” approach provides a more thorough measure of gender equality and supplements the official target with indicators of: primary completion rates disaggregated by gender; under-five mortality rates disaggregated by gender; rate of modern contraceptive use by reproductive age women and their partners; fertility rates among 15- to 19- year old girls; labor force participation rates for 20- to 24- and 25- to 49- year olds, disaggregated by gender; and average hourly wages, also disaggregated by gender.

The report notes that no country or region has achieved gender equality in all the areas covered by the MDG3 plus indicators. The health indicators single out the high mortality rates of girls under age 5 in East Asia and Pacific and South Asia, as well as the high adolescent fertility rates in 36 countries, with a majority of those countries in Sub- Saharan Africa.

You can download the full report in PDF format here.