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KARACHI: Thirteen companies signed a pledge on Tuesday committing to advance the participation of their women employees in tackling climate change, as part of a new initiative launched by the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the Pakistan Business Council (PBC).

The Climate2Equal initiative, launched on Tuesday in Karachi, will establish a peer learning platform bringing together more than 90 Pakistani companies from the sectors hit hardest by climate change, including textiles, telecommunications, e-commerce and logistics. The aim is to support these companies in implementing gender-responsive climate action plans.

Members will be offered trainings and webinars and be able to exchange information and strategies to develop effective plans. IFC and PBC will also provide more in-depth capacity building to companies that make and implement pledges regarding gender and climate and showcase best practice and testimonials to provide a demonstration effect.

“I am certain the pledges made today by leading members of the business community will be instrumental in ensuring that women employees, managers, and decision-makers are at the forefront of designing climate-smart solutions to address the impact of climate change in Pakistan,” said Ehsan Malik, Chief Executive Officer of the PBC.

According to the Country Climate and Development Report (CCDR) released by the World Bank Group in November 2022, women are likely to be disproportionally affected by the floods due to their limited access and availability to social protection and coping mechanisms. This is especially true for women working within the agriculture sector, the largest employer of women in Pakistan.

IFC and PBC will hold several events and webinars for the companies over the next few months, inviting prominent national and global experts to showcase the benefits of women contributing to business-led climate action and profitability.

“Recognizing the connection between gender and climate action is essential in adapting to climate change and putting women at the centre of decisions by businesses in this context is going to be critical,” said Zeeshan Sheikh, IFC Country Manager for Pakistan and Afghanistan.

“We were delighted that Pakistan is amongst the first countries in the region where the Climate2Equal initiative is being launched by IFC and we are pleased by the strong support received from the business community.”

The Climate2Equal initiative falls under the umbrella of IFC’s Pakistan2Equal project, which aims to advance the participation of women in the workplace and incorporate climate action to help boost Pakistan’s economy.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023


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