India ranks 108 out of 145 countries in the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Index. Iceland, Norway, Finland, Sweden and Ireland top the Index.
The international body first published the Global Gender Gap Index in 2006 and has been releasing the Report, which looks at how women compare to men in areas like economic participation and opportunity, health and survival, educational attainment and political empowerment. The Index ranks countries based on how much the gap between women and men has declined according to the various parameters.
India’s neighbours—Bangladesh, China and Sri Lanka—are ranked higher than India. Nepal, Bhutan and Pakistan are ranked below India.
In the sub indexes, India has performed well in political empowerment with a ranking of nine. This is a jump of six positions in the sub index compared to last year. This is because India has more than doubled the percentage of women in ministerial positions from 9% to 22%. The country ranks second in the Asia and Pacific region in political empowerment.
However, that is the only real good news for India. In economic participation and opportunity, which considers labour force participation and wage equality, India ranks a poor 139. India, in fact, widened the gap in labour force participation by 7% and is the third-lowest ranked country in Asia-Pacific in this sub index.
India is ranked 125 in educational attainment and 143 in health and survival. In health and survival, India ranks in the bottom three. India, China and Albania—the bottom three—are also the countries that have declined the furthest in the health and survival sub index.
This Index starkly shows how far India has to go before we can come close to gender equality.