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8 Mar 2023

William Christou, The New Arab

Jordan: Female labour participation third lowest in Middle East region

"Jordan's female labour participation rate is only 14 per cent, third lowest in the region,"

The percentage of women in the workforce in Jordan has remained unchanged over the past decade, a study on Tuesday revealed, calling for reforms to increase female labour participation.

The study, released by the Jordanian Labour Observatory, said that "repellent" working conditions such as low wages, a high gender pay gap and "discriminatory laws" have kept women out of the workforce.

Jordan's female labour participation rate stood at just 14 per cent in the last quarter of 2022, the third lowest in the region, just behind Iraq and Yemen...

The state of stability in women's economic participation rates for more than three decades is mainly due to weak working conditions in the private sector, in particular wages.
Ahmad Awad, Director, Phenix Center for Economics and Informatic Studies

... The government has addressed barriers to female employment, including lifting restrictions on women working in some economic sectors and jobs which require them to stay out of the home in the evening.

However, the study noted that further reforms are needed, such as legal protections from harassment which extended to clients and customers, not just employers.