Empowering women through public procurement and enabling inclusive growth

This publication argues that public procurement represents a significant opportunity to build a more inclusive economy, encourage equitable socio-economic recovery from the global COVID-19 pandemic, and promote gender equality through increased participation of women-owned and women-led businesses in public procurement. Moreover, public procurement has the potential to create equal outcomes for women and men through supporting decent employment and responsible business practices.

The publication summarizes the key challenges women-owned and women-led businesses are facing when competing for public procurement opportunities and presents the main global approaches and policies that have made a difference across the globe. It highlights examples of public procurement policies, good practices, and approaches from several countries, including Dominican Republic, Chile, Colombia, Kenya, South Africa, and United Arab Emirates.

It concludes that to effectively promote gender equality through procurement, approaches need to increase access for women-owned businesses as well as gender-responsive enterprises to facilitate the inclusion of disadvantaged and underrepresented suppliers and to more widely integrate gender equality in the workplace, supply chains, and community.

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