Sunday, February 03, 2008

Sharp Rise in Number of Kuwaiti Working Women

From the Kuwait Times

Sharp rise in number of Kuwaiti working women

Published Date: January 23, 2008

KUWAIT: Kuwait is in the forefront of Arab countries in view of women's participation in labor force by 42 per cent in line with 2006 statistics, an Arab economist said here yesterday.

The percentage of Kuwaiti women's involvement in labor force is continuously on the increase, having recorded roughly 37 percent and 42 percent in 2003 and 2006 respectively, Riyad bin Jalili, an economist at the Arab Planning Institute (API), told a symposium on women and development in the Arab world.

Most working women, who are university graduates, are concentrated in the public sector by around 95 percent, he said. In spite of the high percentage of Kuwaiti women's participation in labor force, leading state posts are often inaccessible to them, having stood up at merely six percent in 2004, Jalili added.

Kuwaiti working women's diversified presence in the labor market is still meager if compared to other Arab countries, he said, arguing that the upward trend of women's education has a limited impact on their diversified involvement in the labor market. They account for 45 percent in administrative professions, 24 percent in teaching and just four percent in medicine and science.

However, divorced women were more active than married ones in terms of economic activities in 2006, he said. Joblessness among Kuwaiti females and males hit 5.2 percent and 2.7 percent respectively in 2006, he added. --- KUNA

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