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Wednesday, 13th March 2013
In General Japan News,

Index shows Japanese women face inequality

Japanese women are not faring well in the battle of the sexes according to MasterCard's Index of Women's Advancement published today, March 13th.

The report looks at the role of women and their standing in society and the economy, specifically in the Asia/Pacific region.

Women's performance in terms of employment, education and leadership are all measured against their male counterparts to form the basis of the index.

Some 14 Asia/Pacific markets have been examined and each country is given a score out of 100 to show how near or far they are from gender equality.

Those countries which score 100 are found to have complete parity between the sexes, while the lower the mark shows a greater disparity between men and women.

New Zealand topped the list of Asia/Pacific countries with a score of 77.8, while Japan was second from the bottom with a count of just 48.1. Only India scored lower with just 38 points.

Georgette Tan, group head of communications for Asia/Pacific, Middle East & Africa, said: "There is still a lot to be done in our region to enhance the role of women across all aspects of society; there are still too few women leaders in government and business, and not enough women-owned and run businesses."

When questioned over possible ways to improve parity between the sexes, Japanese women suggested that providing better childcare entitlement to parents was crucial.

In fact, Japanese, Australian and South Korean women all listed this as playing a vital part in improving the position of women in society as a whole.

Overall, women in the Asia/Pacific region view affirmative action in education as important to achieving parity with men, as 17.1 per cent cited this.

Meanwhile, 13.7 per cent of those questioned said that achieving a greater number of seats in parliament would help to boost women's standing,

The World Economic Forum's gender quality rankings which were published in October 2012 showed that Japan was near the bottom of the list at 101 out of 135 nations listed.

Written by Graham McPherson