Islamabad: The Finance Division of the Government of Pakistan and the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN WOMEN) Pakistan signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for a 5-year partnership to enhance institutionalization of Gender Responsive Budgeting in policies and plans at the Federal and Provincial levels, and to support integration of Gender Responsive Budgeting within the curricula of public sector training institutes. Secretary Finance Dr. Waqar Masood Khan and Country Programme Director, UN Women Pakistan Ms. Alice H. Shackelford signed this MOU during a ceremony held here today.
Pakistan and UN formally joined hands in 2009 for “Strengthening Poverty Reduction Strategy Monitoring Project” (SPRSMP) and to enhance their partnership in gender equality commitments “Gender Responsive Budgeting” and “Engendering the Budget Making Process” in Pakistan.
In the continuation of previous efforts, this MOU aims to further formalize the ongoing cooperation between Finance Division and UN WOMAN under the One UN Pilot in order to support the implementation of human rights through technical assistance, cooperation, consultation, and effective communication between Finance Division and the UN WOMEN.
Under this MOU, UN WOMEN will provide technical assistance to Finance Division in order to achieve the following:
1. Finance Division has access to enhanced in house expertise for gender institutionalization in its policies and plans.
2. Strengthened MTBF team’s capacity to support Federal Ministries in implementing gender responsiveness in the sectoral budgets.
3. Establishing gender sensitive budgeting instrument in place at Federal and Provincial Level and Joint Follow up for Provincial Capacity Development following the Devolution Process.
4. Support integration of GRB in the MTBF course of the public sector training institutes curricula.
5. Enhance further analysis and research/studies around gender responsive policies.
While talking to the ceremony, Ms. Alice H. Shackelford said that she is pleased to sign such an agreement which will enhance and institutionalize the commitments toward gender equality and women empowerment in Pakistan.
Dr. Waqar Kahn appreciated and thanked UN Women Pakistan for their technical cooperation in the previous years. He said that several capacity building and other initiatives have been undertaken during last three years.
He further said that Pakistan is the only country in South Asia that has used all the six GRB tools namely; Gender Aware Policy Appraisal (GAPA), Gender Responsive budgeting Initiative (GABA), Time Use Survey, Gender Appraisal of Medium Term Expenditures Framework (MTEF), Gender Budget Statement and Gender Budget Analysis..
It is stated that United Nations Development Fund for Women, commonly known as UNIFEM was working in Pakistan since many years. In July 2010, UNIFEM has been dissolved and incorporated into the newly established UN Entity for Gender Equality and Empowerment of Women, called UN Women. UN Women has a mandate to accelerate the UN member states in achieving gender equality and women empowerment.
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Haji Ahmed Malik
Principal Information Officer
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