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Bahrain tops GCC with 85pc female literacy.

Bahrain has a record of high educational achievement in the GCC with a female literacy rate of 85 per cent, very close behind male literacy at 91 per cent, said a report.

The GCC population is 48 per cent female, yet the rate of female participation in the workforce across the Gulf states stands at less than 20 per cent, added the report from the Cass Business School Dubai entitled 'Maximising Women's participation in the GCC Workforce'.

The report says that home-working initiatives are the answer to involving the increasing numbers of well-educated GCC women in national workforces and thus boosting local economies and increasing nationalisation rates.

Considering Bahrain specifically, the report acknowledges the Economic Vision 2030, which aims to take progressive action for future generations to ensure sustainability and competitiveness in terms of the country's social and economic development.

Tamkeen was set up as part of the Economic Vision 2030 to implement labour market reforms through facilitating talent competencies amongst Bahrainis, enterprise growth, improving policies and standards as well as human capital investment.

There have been recent collaborations between Tamkeen and the Supreme Council for Women in Bahrain, which aim to synergise efforts from both organisations to assist the contribution of women in the Bahraini economy through attracting them to the field of private business management, focusing on increasing female efficiency and productivity, and integrating women into the labour market, the report argues.

'Such initiatives show that at both ministerial and social levels, there is progressive thought with regards to improving rates of female economic participation in Bahrain,' Cass Business School Centre for Research on Asian Management director Professor Chris Rowley said.

'It is also important to acknowledge that the gap in female employment is not due to a gender gap in education, in fact the various Gulf governments have rapidly improved female access to higher education and Bahrain is no exception."

'Home-working schemes would be consistent with government programmes to enable sustainable development of women's roles in the Gulf," Rowley continued.

'These programmes are essential to accommodate rising levels of qualified female graduates from GCC universities ready to enter the workforce and add to the kingdom's economic development and prosperity and better utilise human capital,' he added. -- TradeArabia News Service

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Publication:TradeArabia (Manama, Bahrain)
Geographic Code:7BAHR
Date:Aug 18, 2011
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