/ ON AGENDA ITEM 3. Follow-up to the Fourth World Conference on Women and to the twenty- third special session of the General Assembly, entitled “Women 2000: gender equality, development and peace for the twenty-first century/
Ladies and Gentlemen,
At the outset, on behalf of the Government of Mongolia, I wish to express appreciation to the Secretary-General for a comprehensive report reviewing and appraising the implementation of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action and the outcomes of the twenty-third special session of the General Assembly.
My delegation highly values contribution of the documents to the establishment of a global framework for realizing gender equality, the empowerment of women and the realization of human rights of women and girls.
It is also worthwhile to underline timeliness of the review and appraisal of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action and the outcomes of the twenty-third special session of the General Assembly that is coinciding with an important period of transition from Millennium Development Goals to Sustainable Development Goals.
Review processes of the Beijing Platform for Action carried out by the United Nations were a highly inclusive and efficient exercise giving opportunity to Member States to reconsider the realities in regard to gender and women's issues.
Mongolia has witnessed remarkable achievements since the Fourth World Women’s Conference in improving gender equality and empowering women and girls.
Among achievements, a major legal and institutional reform must be emphasized. The National Committee on Gender Equality (national machinery) was established in 2005 headed by Prime Minister. The National Committee on Gender Equality is the central policy-coordinating body of the Government and its main task is to support Government- wide mainstreaming of gender equality perspectives in the policy areas. The National Committee facilitates integrating gender perspectives in legislation, public policies and programs. The Gender Equality Law and Electoral Law set a minimum 40 percent requirement of all public service positions, including decision making posts to be allocated to women and in response the political parties were required to put forward not less than 25 percent of their candidates to be women. As a result of this law, the number of women elected as Member of the Parliament tripled during the last general election which was held in 2012.
In 2013, the Government approved a midterm strategy on implementation of the Gender Equality Law 2013-2016. The National Statistical office, in collaboration with Ministries, developed 216 indicators for the purpose of systematic collection of gender- disaggregated data, in areas including population, education, health, poverty, gender based violence, labor, decision making, governance, human rights, media, environment, gender-sensitive planning and budgeting, gender index. The Government is making efforts to institutionalize the reporting on these indicators, e.g the governance indicators are included in the government system and all government agencies are requested to report according on these indicators starting from 2014. Ministries are expected to integrate these gender-disaggregated indicators into their routine statistics in the near future.
Mongolia has already achieved a number of MDG targets such as reducing child mortality, improving maternal health, and limiting the spread of HIV/AIDS. We are on a right track to achieve the targets of cutting malnutrition, ensuring gender equality in wage employment, providing universal access to reproductive health services, and reducing the proportion of people without access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation.
Mongolia is committed to end violence against women and girls. While implementing the law and national program on combating domestic violence, a particular attention was given to establish and improve services of shelters, psychological counseling and hotlines. Special training programs were conducted among officers of law enforcement organizations including police officers. Furthermore, Mongolia joined the UN Secretary- General's UNiTE Campaign to End Violence against Women and on 6 March 2014 on the occasion of the International Women's day, Mr. Tsakhia Elbegdorj, President of Mongolia, signed the United Nations Women’s COMMIT Initiative becoming the 64th country committed to this uneasy but indispensable target.
The Parliament of Mongolia adopted the Law on Combat Domestic Violence in 2004 and is actively pursuing activities to enable the active implementation of the Law. This law will be amended in the spring session of the Parliament. There is still the need for more effective mechanisms for the implementation of the various provisions of this law. According to the police statistics showed that there have been 41 death and 920 people seriously injured resulting from domestic violence and of these injured 86.6 percent were women.
Mongolia is a young nation where more than 40 percent of population is under 24 years old. Thus, there is a pressing demand to invest into them or enhance their access to quality education, health services, and social protection. We need to empower the youth by every possible mean and increase opportunities for them to participate in youth and other civic engagement groups.
As women and girls in Mongolia are highly educated, women constitute more half of the public servants and play important roles in private sector and civil society organizations. Gender ratio at decision-making level, which has not been satisfactory, is steadily increasing. In the current Parliament of Mongolia, there are 10 women-MPs representing
four different political parties. Though they constitute only 13 percent of the 76-member parliament, it was a triple high number than in the previous parliament and gave a strong sense of optimism in bettering gender ratio in the legislative branch. We consider women’s role is vital to peace and security issues and the number of Mongolian female officers is rapidly increasing among the UN Blue Helmets.
In spite of the significant achievements mentioned earlier, it should be recognized that changes toward ensuring gender equality in Mongolia have been uneven and superficial in some fields.
As the national economy has been continuously growing in the last years, spending on gender issues has not increased proportionally. Poverty in Mongolia tends to diverge toward women as they are easily affected by socio-economic changes as economic crisis, rapid increase in prices of consumer goods and food, migration and unemployment.
Major laws including family and labor laws, which contain provisions on stereotyping or highlighting women’s role and responsibilities in the raising their children, need to be amended without delay with new provisions focused more on the equal parenting responsibilities and roles.
Women make about 60% of unemployed and low-income citizens restraining them from a full exercise of their political, economic and social equality rights. There has been a persistent difference between wage amount of male and female workers. According to the 2012 statistics, wage of male workers was 10% higher than of female workers. Moreover, number of single mothers or female-headed households has been increasing as a negative social phenomenon.
In Mongolia, 48% percent of the total population lives in rural regions and about 50% of them are women living in poverty. Rural women don’t have reliable sources of income and they don’t always receive quality health care services in a timely manner due to remote location and high turnover of health professionals. Women and children with disabilities living in countryside are particularly vulnerable to abuse and negligence and demand distinct cares.
Unfinished agenda of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action and the outcomes of the twenty-third special session of the General Assembly should be integrated into post-2015 development agenda.
We are extremely pleased by the integration of a gender perspective into the proposal of the Open Working Group for Sustainable Development Goals and sincerely hope that it will be adopted as a stand-alone goal with measurable targets and indicators and implemented as continuation of the Millennium Development Goals leading to the full implementation to the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action and outcomes of the twenty third session of the special session of the General Assembly.