President of the Republic of Lithuania

Women world leaders must promote women’s participation by their personal example


Friday, September 24, Vilnius - President of the Republic of Lithuania Dalia Grybauskaitė made an address in the panel discussion "Women as a Critical Force in Democratic Governance" hosted by the Community of Democracies under the Lithuanian Presidency and the Council of Women World Leaders.

The President started her address by underlining that the issue of women's rights and empowerment was chosen as one of the key areas of focus when Lithuania took over the presidency of the Community of Democracies. According to the President, active women's ideas and their participation in democratic processes and governance can help overcome the economic crisis sooner, find solutions to long-standing problems and respond to new challenges. One of the effective tools to promote the participation of women in democratic governance is personal example, the President said.

"In times of difficulty, the number of women in leadership positions is growing. Women political leaders in Finland, Germany, the United States and India, as well as in some Latin American and African states are among the most influential politicians today. In Lithuania, too, women hold top positions - President, Speaker of the Parliament, Minister of Finance, and Minister of National Defense. Women are already making a difference in Lithuania. I am convinced that the examples of their professional success will encourage young women of Lithuania to seek and compete for high managerial and political positions," the President said.

President Dalia Grybauskaitė called on women leaders to work to reduce gender gaps in employment and pay, to make good practices visible, and come up with concrete proposals for actions that could be discussed at the high-level meeting on gender issues to be held in Vilnius next summer. That meeting will conclude Lithuania's presidency of the Community of Democracies and is expected to give real momentum to more active participation of women in political and public life.

Other key speakers in the discussion were Finland's President Tarja Halonen, who is also the President of the Council of Women World Leaders, the first head of UN Women and the former President of Chile, Michelle Bachelet, and the President of Liberia, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. The discussion was also attended by Sweden's Crown Princess Victoria and ministers of foreign affairs of many European, Asian and Oceanic countries.  

Press Service of the President

Last updated 2010.09.24 06:54