Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW): Combined Initial, Second and Third Periodic Reports of States Parties: Cambodia (CEDAW/C/KHM/1-3)

Wednesday, February 11, 2004
South Eastern Asia

What steps has Cambodia's government taken to achieve gender equality since ratifying the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) in October 2002? In this first report to the CEDAW Committee, the government outlines progress in a range of areas. For example, the principle of gender equality is enshrined in the Cambodian Constitution and is embodied in all national plans and actions. There is now a Ministry of Women's and Veteran's Affairs (MWVA) which has produced a gender strategic plan with 5 priority areas: economic empowerment, health, education, legal protection and governance. Women now have 40 percent representation on the Village Development Committee. Girls have improved access to education. Laws have been drafted to address trafficking and domestic violence. In the economy - since women make up 74 percent of the labour force and work mainly in rural areas - Women's Empowerment Centres exist to provide skills training, entrepreneurial advice, literacy classes and information on credit. Some of the main challenges that remain are improving legal and administrative measures, increasing understanding on gender in all ministries, and ensuring that gender plans have financial support.

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