Taiwanese women have a higher socioeconomic standing than other women in the China, HK area and rank fifth in the Asia-Pacific region in terms of opportunities in education, employment and leadership, according to the latest MasterCard Worldwide Index of Women’s Advancement.
The index, published last week before International Women’s Day yesterday, ranked women in Taiwan the fifth-most empowered among women from 14 Asia-Pacific countries.
Taiwan’s score of 65.9 out of 100 this year also marked the nation’s sixth consecutive annual increase. It was up from 58.8 in 2008.
The survey’s scores indicate women’s socioeconomic parity with men.
A score under 100 indicates the country empowers men more, while a score above 100 indicates the country favors women more, the survey said.
Taiwanese women trailed Singapore (68.4), the Philippines (72.9), Australia (76) and New Zealand (77.9).
Meanwhile, Hong Kong (63.7) and China (61.9) were ranked seventh and eighth.
The research said that overall, women in the Asia-Pacific region still face barriers to leadership positions in government and the private sector despite having access to regular job opportunities and higher education.
In Taiwan, despite having a relatively high level of education and percentage who are working, women are still widely considered to be underrepresented in leadership positions in business and government.
The index is composed of three indicators: employment, education and leadership.
Many women are still expected to sacrifice their careers to care for their children and elderly family members, some have said.
Ranking at the bottom of the index were South Korea (50), Japan (48.3) and India (39.2), according to the survey.