Promoting Gender Equality in the Mining Sector: Awareness Workshop in Parwan

Charikar, Parwan, 28th June 2018 – Yesterday, 20 male and female staff from Parwan province’s Directorate of Mines and Petroleum (DoMP) completed a three-day workshop on the role of gender in the mining sector. Representatives of the Ministry of Women’s Affairs and the local governor’s office attended the event. The Afghan-German Cooperation’s programme Promoting Good Governance in the Extractive Sector in Afghanistan financed and implemented the workshop together with the Afghan Ministry of Mines and Petroleum (MoMP).

Currently, the number of female professionals in Afghanistan’s mining industry and relevant government institutions is deficient. The Head of DoMP in Parwan, Mr Abdul Ahad Asad, emphasised: “Today, the number of female staff in the mining sector is very low. We should work hard to make them equal players in the sector’s development.”

Currently, only two out of 20 staff members at Parwan’s DoMP are women and they do not occupy leading positions. The workshop aimed at raising gender awareness among the staff to facilitate women’s employment at the department in the future.

The planning officer of the MoMP’s Gender Unit, Ms Wazhma Ghani Babury, commented: “The Afghan government is committed to increase the share of women working at government institutions to 30%. Events that raise awareness on that topic are important elements to achieve this target.”

Participants learned about the differences between gender and sex, gender equity and equality, as well as women’s status in the mining sector. They further discussed the advantages of a gender-balanced working environment. Staff members shall use their newly acquired knowledge when hiring new staff and for future planning.

To raise gender awareness, the MoMP’s Gender Unit implements a wide range of activities.  The unit further became part of the ministry’s recruitment committee to preclude discrimination against women. The Afghan-German Cooperation supports the Gender Unit in implementing capacity development activities and developing a gender policy that shall promote women’s employment in the Afghan mining sector.

The programme Promoting Good Governance in the Extractive Sector in Afghanistan is implemented by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH on behalf of the German Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). To fully leverage the Afghan mining sector’s potential, the programme aims at increasing state revenues, promoting investment and fighting corruption in the sector. The project trains stakeholders to ensure that mining activities are carried out transparently and according to law as well as international health and environmental standards. Among other activities, the project has organised 21 training courses on topics such as mine planning, mining economics and mining supervision for more than 310 mining inspectors and other employees at the Ministry of Mines and Petroleum (MoMP) and provincial authorities since 2013. At the same time, the programme has financed 13 scholarships for Afghan women to promote female participation in the sector. The programme further supports the Afghan Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (AEITI) to promote transparency and fight corruption.

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