The untapped potential of women in Asia: $40 billion

October 31, 2010 at 5:06 pm Leave a comment

Last week U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues Melanne Verveer gave the keynote speech at the Annual Summit of the Global Banking Alliance for Women.  Among other amazing facts, Ambassador Verveer cited a massive amount of pent-up prosperity embodied in Asian women:

“Let me give you a macro-example of what the economic empowerment of women could mean, as if you didn’t know: it is calculated that the Asia-Pacific region is shortchanged in excess of $40 billion a year in GDP because of the untapped potential of women.”

Two more striking quotes from the speech:

“As World Bank president Robert Zoellick says, and I quote him endlessly all over the world, ‘Gender Equality Means Smart Economics.'”

“An article in the Economist noted the following: ‘Forget China, forget India, forget the Internet, it’s women who drive GDP.'”

To read the full text of the speech: http://www.state.gov/s/gwi/rls/rem/2010/150137.htm

More on the Global Banking Alliance for Women: http://www.gbaforwomen.org/

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