Sri Lanka ICT, commercial agri sectors seen biased against women
Nov 24, 2017 14:15 PM GMT+0530 | 0 Comment(s)
ECONOMYNEXT – Employers in ICT and commercial agriculture sectors, two of Sri Lanka’s most promising economic drivers with potential for high earnings, appear to be biased against the hiring of women, according to a new World Bank study.
Gender discrimination may also be detectable from labor market tightness with nearly 60 percent of employers report difficulty in finding new workers, reflecting excess demand for labor, the study ‘Getting to Work: Unlocking Women’s Potential in Sri Lanka’s Labor Force’ noted.
The study highlights the low female labour participation in the workforce and gender discrimination that makes it difficult for women to enter and remain at work and get promoted, and also get fair wages.
“In situations of labor market tightness, economic theory predicts that employers will hire new workers from the reserve of unemployed or inactive workers—if employers believe that potential workers have the necessary skills for the job—to avoid rising wage costs,” the report said.
But it noted that, according to employer response surveys, even in the context of labor market tightness, a significant proportion of employers (53 percent) are not willing to hire women.
Employers’ perceptions about whether women or men are better workers differ by sector.
Employers in the ICT (information, communications and technology) and commercial agriculture sectors appear to believe men to be better workers than women.
The ICT and commercial agriculture sectors, “which are two of Sri Lanka’s most promising economic drivers and also have the potential for high earnings, appear to be biased against the hiring of women,” the study noted.
(COLOMBO, November 24, 2017)