Thematic Brief: Women's Economic Empowerment in the Pacific

Date modified: 20 February 2023 Version 2

This Thematic Brief provides a broad summary of information and analysis about women’s economic empowerment in the Pacific Islands region. The summary includes references to associated research and information. This is one in a series of Thematic Briefs released by the Pacific Women Lead (PWL) at the Pacific Community (SPC) programme, termed PWL at SPC. The briefs have been updated to include COVID-19 considerations and recent programme information, based on the original briefs developed by the former programme, Pacific Women Shaping Pacific Development (Pacific Women).

The following five key messages provide background to women’s economic empowerment issues in the Pacific. Economic empowerment encompasses a wide array of processes, platforms and actors. Economically empowered women have access to and control over resources, enabled by a supportive social and political environment. This includes women’s equal opportunity with men to have control over income and assets, access to decent work, social protection, control over time and equal participation in economic decisions from the household to international levels.

  1. There is a significant and persistent gap between men’s and women’s economic opportunities, security and income.
  2. Women’s empowerment and economic participation is central to sustainable development and sustained poverty reduction.
  3. Improving women’s economic opportunity requires changes in economic and social policies and laws to support women’s equitable participation in existing markets.
  4. Women bear the ‘double burden’ of work, exacerbated during the COVID-19 response period.
  5. Women do not have equal access to the technological and economic resources that can improve productivity and income.

Data and Resources

Issued 2021-11-01
Modified 2023-02-20
Version 2
DCAT Type Text
Publisher Name SPC Pacific Women Lead