The National Bank and UN Women announce the results of Gender Audit for the bank confirming its commitment to enhance women role in the Palestinian economy
A press conference was held today where UN Women and ILO announced the results of Gender Audit, with the participation of the International Labour Organization (ILO) and national partners, under the auspicious of the Palestinian Monetary Authority.
The most highlighted results of the audit, proved that the Bank has a strategy that aims to promote women’s role in society and the economy. It also highlighted the fact that the bank has good practises followed to ensure equality in the workplace through the different services and financial products provided; such as the special products and zero-interest loans provided for productive businesses owned by women aiming to empower women and ensure their financial independence, which gives a space for innovation and entrepreneurship. It also confirmed that the Bank's management has the vision of sustainability linked to the economic sustainable development in Palestine, which cannot be achieved unless all human resources are invested, especially women. Also, the results showed that the percentage of women employees is 32%, one of the highest percentages at the banking sector level.
Within the framework of UN Women Strategic Note 2018-2022, especially in relation to enhancing women income security, decent work and economic autonomy, UN Women works on promoting national policies for decent work and economic opportunities for women in Palestine and more women own, launch and better manage SME’s. to achieve this, UN Women adopts several tools to ensure mainstreaming gender; including the ILO Participatory Gender Audit, through its partnership with ILO.
Dr. Shihadeh, Deputy Governor of the Palestinian Monetary Authority (PMA) confirmed the interest of PMA in supporting the banking sector to mainstream gender, and highlighted the importance of providing financial products targeting women specifically, including entrepreneurs, financial awareness and building the capacities of service providers in line with the needs of different target groups. He also commended the results of the Audit and the importance of having a strategic vision in all the banking institutions that aims at enhancing women access to sustainable financial services. Additionally, he expressed gratitude for UN Women, ILO and TNB for their joint efforts.
Mr. Ahmad Haj Hasan expressed how proud the Bank is by the Audit results, which highlights the Bank real commitment towards supporting women economic empowerment, and reflects the Bank’s current and future plans towards mainstreaming gender within its internal policies. He explained that the Bank has always supported women financial inclusion, where women have reached 34% of the Bank beneficiaries until now, and 55% of savings for women.
Ms. Inas Margieh, UN Women National Programme Coordinator, expressed her gratitude for the Bank commitment to the women empowerment principals and enhancing women role in the economy through conducting the Gender Audit and reinforcing financial services that targets women in specific, in line with Palestine Financial Inclusion Strategy. She also commended the Bank support willingness to complete the Audit process and implement the recommendations to accomplish gender equality in the workplace.
Mr. Mounir Kleibo, Country Representative of ILO in Palestine, explained that the PGA is one of the tools that ILO has developed globally to enhance gender equality, and gender mainstreaming at work. This Audit is considered a qualitative one that is also known as the social Audit, which is distinguished from the financial Audit.