Panel stresses importance of gender-based budgeting in Turkmenistan

A significant step, Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) consultation is one of the first initiatives of UN Women and its collaboration with the government and other agencies in Turkmenistan.

Date: Tuesday, April 12, 2016

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Representatives of ministries and government institutions of Turkmenistan discussing SDG 5 targets and their relevance to Turkmenistan. Photo: UN Women/Mayya Kelova

At a UN Women Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) consultation with representatives of 13 national Turkmenistan ministries and agencies, participants stressed the importance of allocating public funds for gender equality and women’s empowerment and proposed studying gender-based budgeting.

An important cross-sector discussion of gender and one of the first initiatives of UN Women and its collaboration with the government and other agencies in Turkmenistan, the SDGs consultation discussed nine proposed targets to SDG 5, which aims to “achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls”.

The SDGs are a universal set of goals, targets and indicators that will frame national policies and strategies over the next 15 years, and guide the work of UN around the world.

Participants, who agreed to adopt seven global targets for SDG 5, also discussed the importance of women participating at all levels of political, economic and public decision-making.

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Irina Dedova, UN Women Turkmenistan Programme Specialist presenting on gender and SDGs. Photo: UN Women/Mayya Kelova

“Women make up 26.4 per cent of representatives in Parliament and participate in many spheres in Turkmenistan,” said Ms. Irina Dedova, UN Women Turkmenistan Programme Specialist. “Women occupy high-level ministerial positions and in local municipal bodies. UN Women will provide assistance to the Government of Turkmenistan to implement gender-related SDGs.”

Co-led by UN Women and the National Institute of Democracy and Human Rights under the President of Turkmenistan, the SDGs consultation in Turkmenistan included discussion contributions from UN agencies UNDP, UNICEF, UNFPA and WHO.

Reproductive and sexual health also drew attention during the SDGs consultations. While many reproductive health services are available in Turkmenistan, participants noted the importance of using health centres and schools to raise public awareness on reproductive health and the need to make sexual and reproductive health education part of school programmes.

Background:

SDG 5 says, in part: “Empowering women and promoting gender equality is crucial to accelerating sustainable development. Ending all forms of discrimination against women and girls is not only a basic human right, but it also has a multiplier effect across all other development areas...Ensuring universal access to sexual and reproductive health, and affording women equal rights to economic resources such as land and property, are vital targets to realizing this goal. There are now more women in public office than ever before, but encouraging more women leaders across all regions will help strengthen policies and legislation for greater gender equality.”