Bulgarian Deputy PM Zaharieva Addresses Fifth World Assembly for Women


Bulgarian Deputy PM Zaharieva
Addresses Fifth World
Assembly for Women

Tokyo, March 23 (BTA) - Bulgarian Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Ekaterina Zaharieva, who is paying a five-day visit to Japan (May 21-25), addressed the Fifth World Assembly for Women here on Friday, Zaharieva's Ministry said in a press release on Saturday.

"Bulgaria ranks first in Europe in the number of women working in the IT sector. Their share was 27 per cent in 2017, compared to a EU average of 17.2 per cent. Women account for 53 per cent of scientists and engineers in our country," Zaharieva said in her statement. She familiarized the participants in the forum with Bulgaria's maternity and paternity policy and the levelling of the rights of women and men in pension legislation.

Former Chilean President and incumbent UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet quoted a World Bank report, according to which Bulgaria scored 93.75 in the gender-equality-measuring Women, Business and the Law Index. Bachelet recalled that the interim World Bank Group President Kristalina Georgieva is Bulgarian, and so is former UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova.

Zaharieva voiced regret that only 29 foreign ministers worldwide are women, but said that she is the third lady to hold this portfolio in Bulgaria. Moreover, 50.78 per cent of the members of the Bulgarian diplomatic service are women, and 18 of them head diplomatic missions, she added.

The Foreign Minister said further that, with regard to the pay gap, Bulgaria ranks above the European average. On the continent, the gender pay gap approximates 14 per cent for identical positions, sometimes even in the same companies.

While it held the Presidency of the Council of the European Union in the first half of 2018, Bulgaria initiated a Women leaders@digital for Europe Coalition, Zaharieva recalled. LI/LG

Source: Tokyo