WEF’s Global Gender Gap Report 2018: Iceland tops; India ranks 108th

The World Economic Forum (WEF) on December 18, 2018, released the Global Gender Gap Report 2018, reviewing 149 countries on the basis of their progress towards gender parity and then lists them accordingly in its Global Gender Gap Index.

These 149 countries are ranked on the basis of four thematic dimensions- Economic Participation and Opportunity, Educational Attainment, Health and Survival, and Political Empowerment.

This year, the Gender Gap Index was topped by Iceland with a score of 0.858, holding the top spot in the index for the 10th consecutive year.

India’s rank in Global Gender Gap Index 2018

India was ranked 108th in the Global Gender Gap Index 2018, same as it was ranked in 2017.

In terms of economic opportunity and participation, India ranked 142nd out of 149 countries. Moreover, India continued to rank third-lowest in the world on health and survival, remaining the world’s least-improved country on this subindex.

Though India made no improvement in the overall gender gap ranking, it recorded improvement in wage equality and managed to fully close its tertiary education gender gap for the first time.

Among other South Asian countries, India fetched fourth place with top 3 being Bangladesh (48th), Sri Lanka (100th) and Nepal (105th).

south Asia is the second-lowest-scoring region, with a remaining gender gap of 34.2%, ahead of the Middle East and North Africa, and behind sub-Saharan Africa.

Key highlights of the Global Gender Gap Report 2018

According to the report, the world has closed 68 per cent of its gender gap; and at the current rate of change, it will take 108 years more to close the overall gender gap and 202 years to bring about parity in the workplace.

The Gender Gap Index 2018 was topped by Iceland, having closed more than 85.8 per cent of its overall gender gap.

Nordic countries dominated the top spots in the index with Norway ranked at 2nd, Sweden at 3rd, and Finland at 4th.

Other countries rounding of the top-10 were Nicaragua (5th), Rwanda (6th), New Zealand (7th), the Philippines (8th), Ireland (9th) and Namibia (10th).

Among the G20 group of countries, France leads in 12th place, followed by Germany (14th), United Kingdom (15th), Canada (16th) and South Africa (19th), United States (51st), and six countries below 100- China (103rd), India (108th), Japan (110th), Korea (115th) Turkey (130th) and Saudi Arabia (141st).

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India moves up to 77th rank in Ease of Doing Business Index

India jumped 23 ranks in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business Index 2018 to 77. It ranked 100 in the 2017 report.

The Index ranks 190 countries across 10 indicators ranged across the lifecycle of a business from ‘starting a business’ to ‘resolving insolvency’.

India’s strong reform agenda to improve the business climate for small and medium enterprises is bearing fruit. It is also reflected in the government’s strong commitment to broaden the business reforms agenda at the state and now even at the district level,”

“The improvement in rankings is excellent news for India, and good news for the business community,” Commerce Minister Suresh Prabhu said at a press conference. “I’m sure we will continue to improve it more and more.”

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley pointed out that, since the World Bank sets May 1 as the deadline for measurement, there are several initiatives taken by the government that will only reflect in next year’s rankings including the effects of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code and the full effect of the Goods and Services Tax.

He noted that, despite the sharp improvement India has made in several of the categories in the Index, there were others such as registering a property, starting a business, taxation, insolvency, and enforcing a contract where a lot of work still needs to be done.

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