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Sep 26, 2023 / 17:53

Hanoi calls for economic empowerment of ethnic minority women

There are still many challenges to the economic development of ethnic minority areas in Hanoi.

Hanoi authorities are calling on men to support the economic empowerment of ethnic minority women, according to Le Kim Anh, chairwoman of the city's Women's Union.

Anh said Hanoi has 13 communes and one ethnic minority village in five districts - Ba Vi, Thach That, Quoc Oai, My Duc and Chuong My. The municipal People's Committee has assigned the city's Women's Union to coordinate the project 'Implementing Gender Equality and Solving Urgent Problems of Women and Children' under the National Target Program for Socio-Economic Development in Ethnic Minority and Mountainous Areas for 2021-2030.

A couple from an ethnic minority group runs a homestay business on the outskirts of Hanoi. Photo: Hoang Nam/ The Hanoi Times

She stressed that the union has conducted a communication campaign for women to change their thinking and working methods; held training, seminars, and knowledge competitions to increase women's understanding of gender equality, health care, and prevention of violence and abuse against them and their children; trained women officials in ethnic minority areas; and helped women access loans for economic development.

"In ethnic minority communes, the union is providing loans worth more than VND180 billion (about US$7.3 million) from the Social Policy Bank to nearly 4,000 borrowers, and VND74.9 billion (about US$3.1 million) from the Agricultural Bank to 758 borrowers," Anh said.

She added that the union will continue to develop specific plans to support women in poverty reduction and economic development in the coming period. "The union has built an economic development model contributing to sustainable poverty reduction in the locality. We have also provided vocational training for women members," Anh said.

Pham Thi Thanh Huong, vice chairwoman of the Hanoi Women's Union, said the union has used many models in implementing the above project.

"To promote the economic empowerment of ethnic minority women, the commune women's union has been screening poor and near-poor households headed by women for effective support. In 2023, the union helped 13 poor and 83 near-poor households improve their living standards," Huong added.

According to the union's report, the poverty rate (according to Hanoi's poverty standard) in 13 ethnic minority and mountainous communes was 0.72% at the end of 2022. The average per capita income is over VND55 million ($2,250)/person/year. All communes in Hanoi's mountainous ethnic minority areas have met the new rural standard.

However, the report showed that the economic development of ethnic minorities in Hanoi still faces many challenges, such as gender stereotypes, lack of awareness and skills of women in ethnic minority areas, differences in living conditions between ethnic minority and urban areas, habits and customs, resources and human capacity.