Tourism Leads In Advancing Gender Equality Globally Says UNWTO

UNWTO Global report on Women in Tourism 2019 edition Picture

The second edition of the Global Report on Women in Tourism has finally been launched by The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), in collaboration with UN Women, The German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ), World Bank Group and Amadeus. In this year’s publication the Tourism sector has globally positioned as a global leader in Advancing gender equality. 

The UNWTO Secretary-General, Zurab Pololikashvili, in his reaction to the report said “tourism is leading the charge for female empowerment all over the world. Across the private and public sectors women are harnessing the potential of tourism to become financially independent, challenge stereotypes and start their own businesses.

The UNWTO thereby affirm its commitment to working towards UN Sustainable Development Goal 5 – the empowerment of women and girls – and ensuring that tourism continues to be at the forefront of gender-equality efforts.”

The publication further highlights the progress the global tourism sector has made in advancing gender equality, with key case studies and statistics gathered from around the world.

The key findings shows below that:

  • The majority of the tourism workforce worldwide is female: 54% of people employed in tourism are women compared to 39% in the broader economy
  • The wage-gap is smaller in the tourism sector: Women in tourism earn 14.7% less than men compared to 16.8% in the broader economy
  • Tourism offers women more opportunities for leadership roles: 23% of tourism Ministers are female compared to 20.7% of Ministers overall

The report also highlights how more and more women are challenging gender stereotypes in the sector.

In Morocco, for example, women have been issued tour guide licenses for the first time, while in the UK an Airline company has doubled the number of female pilots they employ and Uganda’s Hotel Owner’s Association is now lead by its first female CEO.

Technology in its own right has been a facilitator for empowering and providing the feminine gender with easy access to more training opportunities that inspire female entrepreneurship in the vast tourism market.

In the public sphere, policy-makers are waking up to the importance of gender equality in tourism and putting measures in place to ensure women fairly share the benefits that the sector can bring.


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