ILO Symposium: Global Supply Chains Good for Gender Equality

Two machinists working on machineThe International Organization of Employers participated in the International Labor Organization Symposium on Trade and Employment on September 2, which explored the impact of international trade on employment in developing countries. The session on trade and workers’ skills was particularly useful in supporting the Employer position that global supply chains produce better employment outcomes and contribute to gender equality.

Key takeaways for advocacy:

  • MNEs play an important role in closing the gender gap through cultural convergence; there is significant evidence from China that foreign firms transfer their corporate culture of employing women to their subsidiaries and that this effect ripples out to local firms
  • Gender prejudices contribute to macroeconomic imbalances in many developing countries
  • Firms that perpetrate prejudice against women have smaller profits and lower aggregate productivity
  • Exporters pay 31 percent higher wages than non-exporting counterparts and are on average 130 percent larger in terms of employee levels
  • Contrary to the belief that preferential trade agreements are more advantageous to MNEs, in fact, only a small percentage of large MNEs benefit from such trade liberalisation

Staff Contact:   Ronnie Goldberg

Senior Counsel
Tel: 212.703.5057

Ronnie Goldberg advises USCIB’s president and CEO on strategic matters and represents American business at several high-level forums. She currently serves as the U.S. employer representative on the International Labor Organization’s Governing Body, and chairs the BIAC Employment, Labor, and Social Affairs (ELSA) Committee.
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