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Women's Economic Empowerment in Selected MENA Countries

The Impact of Legal Frameworks in Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Libya, Morocco and Tunisia

image of Women's Economic Empowerment in Selected MENA Countries

This report examines how current legal provisions in Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Libya, Morocco and Tunisia are impacting women’s ability to fully participate in economic life, both as employees and entrepreneurs. It is based on a comparative analysis of the various rights set out in constitutions, personal status laws, labour laws, in addition to tax and business laws. The report recognises the considerable progress made – in particular in the aftermath of the 2011 uprisings – following the adoption of constitutional and institutional reforms to strengthen women’s status.

Yet ensuring sufficient opportunities for women remains a challenge in the six countries. The report suggests that this may be due to different factors such as: the existence of certain laws that are gender discriminatory, contradictions between various legal frameworks, lack of enforcement mechanisms, and barriers for women in accessing justice.  Through targeted policies, countries can tackle these challenges, and help unleash women’s potential to boost growth, competitiveness and inclusive social development.

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Women's participation in the labour market and entrepreneurship in selected MENA countries

This chapter presents an overview of women’s educational attainment, participation in the labour market and involvement in entrepreneurship in the six countries under review – Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Jordan, Morocco and Tunisia. It examines women’s engagement in the economies of the six countries as compared to men’s participation as well as to women’s economic involvement in other parts of the world. The chapter also seeks to better understand the main features defining women’s economic status and the different characteristics of men and women in employment and entrepreneurship.

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