Media advisory: High-Level Panel on Women’s Economic Empowerment report presentation to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon


What:  Press Conference

Guests at the Noon Briefing: Luis Guillermo Solís Rivera, High-Level Panel Co-Chair and President of Costa Rica and Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women, will be Guests at the Noon Briefing and present the key findings of the Interim Report.

When: 22 September, 12.20 p.m. (approx.)

Where: S-0237, UN Headquarters, New York

The High-Level Panel (HLP) for Women’s Economic Empowerment will present its first report to the United Nations Secretary-General. The findings will highlight seven drivers to unlock the power of women to work and achieve their financial independence, such as tackling adverse norms and discriminatory laws, reducing and redistributing unpaid work and care, increasing access to loans and changing discriminatory business practices.

The Panel, created by the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon earlier this year, aims at placing women’s economic empowerment at the top of the global agenda to accelerate progress towards the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

What: UN Secretary General’s High Level Panel on Women’s Economic Empowerment

When: Thursday, 22 September, 9 a.m. – 12.30 p.m.

Where: UN Headquarters (ECOSOC Chamber), New York

Who: The list of speakers at the event include:

  • HLP Co-Chairs Luis Guillermo Solís Rivera, President of Costa Rica, and Simona Scarpaleggia, CEO of IKEA Switzerland.
  • Panel members Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women; Winnie Byanyima, Executive Director of Oxfam International; Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund; Jim Kim, President of The World Bank Group and Guy Ryder, Director-General of the International Labour Organization.

Government representatives include Andrew Holness, Prime Minister of Jamaica; Erna Solberg, Prime Minister of Norway; and Priti Patel, Secretary of State for International Development, the United Kingdom.

The event is open to the media. UN Media accreditation is required (learn more here) and due to special restriction measures during the UN General Assembly, a Special Event Ticket will also be required for the HLP event itself. The Special Event Ticket can be picked up at the MALU office (2nd floor of the UN Headquarters) on the day of the event. UN accredited media are able to access the noon briefing without a Special Event Ticket.

The Panel event and the press conference will be webcast live at: and

Media Contacts:

HLP Secretariat – Kelly Courtney, E-mail: Kelly.courtney[at] and Tel: +1 617-290-9190

UN Women - Maria Sanchez, E-mail: maria.sanchez[at] and  Tel: +1 646-781-4507, and Oisika Chakrabarti, E-mail: oisika.chakrabarti[at] and Tel: +1 646-781-4522

Follow the online conversation live on UNTV and on Twitter using the hashtag #HLP


Women’s economic empowerment and economic justice is not only the right thing to do, but also the smart thing: gender equality is a matter of basic human rights, and women’s economic empowerment can generate huge gains for human development and economic growth. Recent research indicates that advancing gender equality could add up to $28 trillion annually to global growth (McKinsey, 2015) and that companies with higher female representation in top management outperform those that don’t (Catalyst, 2015). Considerable progress has been made, but women’s economic rights are yet to be fully realized.

Women work in a variety of ways, paid and unpaid. The gender differences in unpaid work and all kinds of paid work are large and persistent, and represent a constraint for women’s economic opportunities. Globally, two out of four women over 15 are in paid employment, compared with about 3 out of four men, and hundreds of millions of women work informally without social and labour protection. Only 20 per cent of firms in the poorest countries have female owners.

On 22 September, the Secretary-General’s High-Level Panel (HLP) for Women’s Economic Empowerment will present its first report to the UN Secretary-General. This report focuses on pay, productivity and prospects of women in the formal sector, informal work and women-owned enterprises. It features examples of policy and programming initiatives that are proven to have positive impact and that have the promise for lasting change if scaled up.

Complete version of the Interim report will be available online at: