UN-Women Executive Board: National Statement on UN-Women's Strategic Plan

Jun 17, 2014

(as delivered:)

"Mr. President,

Since its inception, UN Women has moved steadily forward, guided by the principle articulated in the UN Charter- the principle of equal rights of men and women. UN Women contributes to advancing gender equality, women’s rights and the empowerment of women in general as well as within the UN System. We would like to express our sincere appreciation for the work of UN Women and reiterate our commitment to the organization.

Global poverty reduction, sustainable development, preservation of natural resources, the guarantee of human rights and good governance are goals that can only be accomplished if the realization of gender equality and the implementation of women’s rights are at the center of the global target system. Gender equality will and must be a performance benchmark in the post- 2015 process.

Mr. President,

We have come far, but we have to go further in order to fulfill the mandate of this organization and transform visions into reality.  In its Strategic Plan, UN Women has set itself ambitious goals.

Our national policies and our development cooperation conceive gender equality as a key component to contribute to the generation of democratic societies based on human rights, social justice and sustainable development.  Arising from our all-encompassing guiding principle of human rights, women’s rights in particular, always play a decisive role.

The German gender concept in development cooperation not only pursues the object of gender equality and the strengthening of women’s rights, but also aims to overcome multiple discrimination, which primarily women fall victim to. Our strategy is based on a three-pronged approach. Its key components are: Empowerment, Gender Mainstreaming and political dialogue.

We are convinced that we will achieve further success in gender equality on the basis of this strategy. With the provision of 9.2 billion euros since the Millennium Summit in 2000 for bilateral development programs, which –regardless of their actual goal- have a positive impact on gender equality, and additional 757 million euros in funding, committed to projects whose primary goal is gender equality, Germany has contributed to the promotion of gender equality in its partner countries.

Since we have committed our gender policy to a human rights-based approach, the strengthening of gender equality is a stand- alone goal of German development cooperation. The dissolution of unfair structures and mechanisms, as well as the transformation of traditional role models affect equality between women and men in partnerships, family and the working world, and is an ongoing political, social, cultural and economic task in Germany. A life cycle-oriented policy for women and men, as well as the goal of partnerships on an equal footing, are on the agenda of modern equality and social policy.

UN Women is an standard-setting global actor and carries weight on the international scene due to its specific knowledge. As a United Nations body, UN Women has the legitimacy and authority to set standards, which we implement in bilateral development cooperation and national gender equality policies. We wish to cooperate even closer with UN Women in order to achieve further progress. A stronger cooperation requires intensive exchange on gender relevant issues, as well as an evaluation of the measures taken. We therefore appreciate UN Women’s aim to institutionalize a strong culture of result- based management, reporting knowledge management and evaluation.

We would like to congratulate UN-Women on the progress made in implementing the first UN-Women Strategic Plan (2011-2013) and in fulfilling the organization’s comprehensive mandate. We would like to particularly emphasize UN Women’s efforts in improving the global normative framework, especially in strengthening commitments for the elimination and prevention of all forms of violence against women and girls, as well as in advocating for a stand-alone goal on gender equality and women’s empowerment in the post-2015 agenda. Recalling the Agreed Conclusions of the 58th Commission on the Status of Women, we would like to encourage UN Women to continue advocating for a stand-alone gender goal, as well as for  comprehensive and systematic gender mainstreaming into all goals of any new development framework.

We are convinced that policy coherence, knowledge-sharing and coordination are key elements to ensure gender-sensitive development. We therefore highly appreciate UN Women’s continuous commitment to systematically strengthen the UN’s performance on gender equality and women’s empowerment. Recognizing the importance of gender-sensitive strategies and policies, we would like to also stress the importance of promoting measures to generate political will, transparency and a gender-sensitive organizational culture. 

Gender equality has a long history both in the Member States and in the United Nations. We appreciate that UN Women has launched a global campaign to mark the 20th anniversary of the Beijing Platform for Action - and thus bringing the Beijing Platform for Action back into the spotlight  and also introducing a discussion about the future we want. Germany gladly participates together with our civil society.

Gender-sensitive data and indicators are central prerequisites to monitor progress in promoting gender equality and women’s rights. Therefore, Germany highly welcomes UN Women’s continuous efforts to collect, analyse, and disseminate gender-sensitive data. It is important that the agreed set of indicators will be adequately considered in the discussions on gender-sensitive targets and indicators of a new development framework. We will support UN Women in developing approaches to test and implement the set of gender indicators at country level.

We believe that the current strategic plan is a strong starting point for progress in the realm of gender equality and women’s empowerment and look forward to make this the century for achieving gender equality and empowering women and girls.

Thank you!" 

© GermanyUN

UN-Women Executive Board: National Statement on UN-Women's Strategic Plan

Women's rights and gender equality

Sexual abuse, trafficking in women, domestic violence, forced marriage and genital mutilation are human rights violations which affect women and children almost exclusively. That's why the protection of women are central to Germany's human rights policy.