Gender Inclusive Green Growth in Lao PDR: Recommendations to maximize economic growth through gender equality

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November 2018
Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI)

This policy brief examines experiences with gender mainstreaming and the situation of women, men, girls and boys in Lao PDR to identify some of the barriers to inclusive economic growth, gender equality and poverty reduction. The purpose is to provide recommendations to help promote gender equality in the country's National Green Growth Strategy (NGGS) and as green growth is mainstreamed into national planning and policy-making. Gender equality is not only pursued because it is an intrinsic value and right in and of itself, but also because it is instrumental in realizing economic growth (International Labour Organization 2015).

The brief includes two sets of recommendations. The first set identifies three strategic gender issues that should be addressed for inclusive green growth. The second set includes three recommendations to enable effective gender mainstreaming in the NGGS.

Strategic gender issues for inclusive green growth in Lao PDR include:
1. Empower women and marginalized people to gain access to green growth benefits, and address gender gaps in Lao PDR’s green growth priority sectors.
2. Maximize potential co-benefits by prioritizing opportunities with broad-based participation.
3. Tackle social barriers to gender parity in work to drive additional economic growth, including through:
  • Making essential services and social protection accessible to all and responsive to women’s needs;
  • Taking steps to better value and invest in care work; and
  • Building on positive aspects of culture and challenge harmful gender stereotypes.
Recommendations for effective gender mainstreaming in the NGGS include:
1. Commit to mainstreaming gender in the design, implementation, and monitoring and evaluation of green growth by developing a gender action plan for the NGGS and monitoring the progress of its implementation.
2. Partner with the Lao Women’s Union (LWU) to tap into their expertise to help mainstream gender in the green growth agenda. Simultaneously, build capabilities to improve gender equality, promote more inclusive green growth and maximize economic growth opportunities.
3. Monitor female labor force participation in quality, green jobs.