Publication ‘Women and Men in BiH’ – Gender statistics an important part of EU integration process

SARAJEVO, February 22 (FENA) –  The publication “Women and Men in Bosnia and Herzegovina 2023” was presented at a thematic conference in Sarajevo today, providing an overview of gender equality in various spheres of BiH society.

The event was organized by UN Women BiH, in cooperation with the Agency for Statistics of BiH and the Agency for Gender Equality of BiH, within the project “Gender Equality Facility” funded by Sweden, with the aim of improving the effectiveness of institutional mechanisms for gender equality in BiH.

The Agency for Statistics of BiH, as the coordinator of official statistics in BiH, is making significant efforts to improve the statistical system of BiH and enhance the quality of data collection and processing. The publication “Women and Men in BiH” was created in 2005 in response to the increasing need to monitor society through gender-disaggregated statistical data.

“The purpose of gender statistics is to provide the data necessary for relevant authorities at all government levels in BiH to fulfill the legal obligation of coordinating the implementation of program objectives from the Gender Action Plan of BiH and ensure the implementation of international standards in the field of gender equality,” said Vesna Ćužić, director of the Agency for Statistics of BiH.

The publication “Women and Men in BiH” provides important statistical data on the participation of women and men in areas addressed by the new, fourth Gender Action Plan 2023 – 2027.

“In order to plan and implement measures to achieve a more equal gender representation in a particular area or activity, it is necessary to address the root causes that have predominantly led to inequality. This publication represents a key tool for preparing such policies and identifying priorities and new challenges,” said Samra Filipović-Hadžiabdić, director of the Agency for Gender Equality of Bosnia and Herzegovina of the Ministry of Human Rights and Refugees of BiH.

The publication provides gender-disaggregated data in the areas of health, education, labor force, social protection, judiciary, democracy, rule of law, environment, and others.

For example, although women make up more than 50% of the population in BiH, only 11 women hold ministerial positions at the level of the Council of Ministers and entity governments (out of a total of 44 ministers), while 85% of top management positions in the largest companies in BiH are held by men.

Regarding the gender gap in employment, in BiH, 40% of women aged 20-64 are employed compared to 67.7% of men, while 43% of women with young children are employed full-time.

“One of the aims of the European integration process is to improve gender-disaggregated statistics which will ultimately lead to the improvement of the BiH statistical system, but also to the improvement of policy creation in BIH. UN Women in BiH will continue supporting all institutions to improve the lives of all women, men, girls, and boys. Now is the time to accelerate policy-making so we can advance the achievement of SDG5 and Agenda 2030,“ said Jo-Anne Bishop, UN Women BiH representative.

At the event, the panel “The role of gender statistics in the European Integration Process” discussed the importance of gender-disaggregated data in the process of European Union accession and meeting criteria related to gender equality.

The latest Report of the European Commission for Bosnia and Herzegovina emphasized the importance of collecting gender-disaggregated statistics, particularly considering that BiH is a candidate for EU membership.

Participants in the panel were Darija Ramljak, assistant director in the Directorate for European Integration of BiH, Kika Babić Svetlin, senior advisor at the Agency for Gender Equality of BiH, and Bojan Baškot, assistant professor at the Faculty of Economics in Banja Luka.