New report analyzes the state of gender equality in Bosnia and Herzegovina


Sarajevo, November 15, 2022 – The report “Moving towards the Gender Equality Index, Bosnia and Herzegovina 2022” was launched today in Sarajevo. For the first time, the country will have access to a statistically legitimate, objective, and up-to-date tool to compare the state of gender equality with other countries in the region and the European Union.

The report was developed by the Agency for Gender Equality of the Ministry of Human Rights and Refugees of Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH), the Agency for Statistics, and UN Women under the European Union (EU) funded project „Gender Equality Facility“, in cooperation with the European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE).

The Gender Equality Index, developed by EIGE in 2013, is recognised in the European Union as an important tool for analysing the state of gender equality in a society as well as for comparing current trends and the current situation at the EU level. The Index presents data in six core domains: work, money, knowledge, time, power, and health.

Since 2016, the Agency for Gender Equality, together with the Agency for Statistics, have been engaged in activities that have led to the development of the Gender Equality Index in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

In her welcome address, Samra Filipović Hadžiabdić, Director of the Agency for Gender Equality, reflected on the agency's partnership with other gender institutional mechanisms and statistical agencies in continuously advocating for the collection of gender-disaggregated data in all spheres of life. „Such data is necessary for the full implementation of the existing international obligations of Bosnia and Herzegovina, adoption of European standards and implementation of EU directives in the field of gender equality,” she said.

The United Nations (UN) Resident Coordinator in BiH, Ingrid Macdonald, shared how all UN agencies are adopting gender equality as a cross-cutting value and intensifying their efforts towards gender mainstreaming. She noted: „Gender equality is one of the key SDGs and it underpins all of them. If we do not move forward on it, we cannot move forward on health, education or economis prosperity.“

The Head of European Integration, Political, Press and Information section at the EU Delegation in BiH, Aurelie Valtat, stressed: „The European Commission’s opinion, which outlines reforms that BiH needs to undertake to advance on its EU path, underlines gender equality as a critical element and as one of the key priorities for BiH to be addressed on this path. The EU remains committed to join efforts with all of you in order to engage together and make a real difference.“

In addition to congratulating BiH on the development of the report, Maruša Gortnar, Head of Operations at EIGE, thanked national partners for their dedication, persistence and commitment. She emphasized: „The Gender Equality Index has become a flagship initiative in the Western Balkans and Türkiye and EIGE is very proud to be sharing its knowledge, methods and tools with BiH and the region on their European path. This year, EIGE marks its 10th anniversary of cooperation with the Directorate General for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations and its support for gender equality, data collection and regional cooperation with the Western Balkans.“

Offering her congratulations as well, the Regional Director of UN Women Europe and Central Asia, Alia El-Yassir, commented: „There has never been a more important time to understand the progress we have made, as we face many challenges ahead.“ She continued to say that BiH should be proud of the legal and policy frameworks that are in place, with the focus to now being on their implementation. She affirmed: „UN Women will continue to support activities in BiH and in the Western Balkans region that will help strengthen resilience and nurture our joint aims regarding full gender equality.“

The report is expected to support the establishment of an evidence base to inform efforts in achieving gender equality in Bosnia and Herzegovina and in the future development of the full Gender Equality indeks for the country.

The launch was hosted by the Agency for Gender Equality of Bosnia and Herzegovina with the support and cooperation of UN Women within the project "EU Gender Equality Facility“ funded by the European Union in the amount of 500.000 euros to improve the efficacy of institutional mechanisms for gender equality in BiH.


For additional information, please contact Aida Zukić, UN Women GEF Communication Assistant, via email or phone +387 (0) 62 318 506.