Gender equality forum held in Bucharest. Ambassador Anneli Lindahl Kenny: Sweden is “a leader in gender equality”, but this is not an excuse to diminish the efforts made in this field


Sweden is “a leader in gender equality”, but this is not an excuse to diminish the efforts made in this field, Swedish Ambassador in Bucharest, Anneli Lindahl Kenny, told a Wednesday’s forum on gender equality.

“I think that all countries, including my country, are facing challenges and we have to protect what we have achieved. There are forces that want to pull us back,” she said.  Ambassador of Sweden in Romania, H.E. Anneli Lindahl Kenny was  invited to talk about the Swedish feminist government and Feminist Foreign Policy at SNSPA in Bucharest where participants could find out more about how to include the gender perspective into policies, legislation and justice.

The ambassador said that in Sweden, despite the engaged policies to ensure women’s rights, there are still problems with women and men’s salaries. Thus, she detailed, a woman in Sweden earns by an average of 13% less than a man who has an identical position. At the same time, in the private sector, only 29% of the members of the boards of directors are women, while there is equality in the public system.

“In order to meet the current demands on the labour market, both women and men should be given equal opportunities,” said President Klaus Iohannis in a message sent to this forum and read by State Adviser Nicoleta Nicolae.

“Romania is strongly committed to combating discrimination and that is why achieving gender equality goals is a priority,” said the President of Romania, stressing that “there is still a need for sustained efforts to completely eliminate misconceptions about the roles that women and men have in society.”

In turn, Gianina Dimitrescu, adviser at the National Agency for Equal Opportunities for Women and Men (ANES), showed that for the first time in Romania there is a distinct chapter dedicated to women and this chapter is included in the governing program for the period 2018 – 2021.

According to her, the ANES is making efforts to reduce the pay gap between women and men, which is more observable in the private sector.

“Often times (…) the fact that I no longer have the patience to wait for 100 or 200 years to see gender equality and I no longer have sometimes the patience to see only at the discourse level and less at the level of action the policies of the field (…) requires our effort to put pressure on those responsible and those who have the power to decide to properly finance the relevant policies and make a difference in the Romanian society,” said also the Executive Director of the Center for Curricular Development and Gender Studies: FILIA, Andreea Braga.