9 Philippine Companies Just Earned Awards for Outstanding Gender Equality Practices

At the 2021 Philippines Women Empowerment Principles Awards by UN Women and the European Union.

The 2021 Philippines Women Empowerment Principles (WEP) Awards by UN Women and the European Union has just recognized nine Philippines-based companies for "championing gender equality and women's empowerment."

The awardees were a mix of large companies, small and mid-size businesses, and social enterprises: Shell, Procter &. Gamble Philippines, Bayo, Philippine National Bank, EdukasyonPH, Villgro Philippines, as well as key people in Standard Chartered Bank (CEO and president Lynette Ortiz) and Coffee for Peace (Felicitas Pantoja).

In a roundtable, the awardess spoke about the importance of promoting gender equality and women's empowerment. Here's what they had to say.

“We at Standard Chartered Bank believe in equal opportunities for all. Being an inclusive employer and business is fundamental to our strategy and our purpose, ‘Driving commerce and prosperity though our unique diversity,’” shared Standard Chartered Bank Chief Executive Officer Lynette V. Ortiz.

Lorelei Osial, Shell in the Philippines’s Vice-President for Finance Operations, said: “The energy sector is often perceived as a male-dominated industry, and so it is important that women have career development opportunities and know they will be empowered as they pursue them. At Shell companies in the Philippines, we are proud to share that we have more than achieved the 50-50 ratio. A full 59 per cent of our employees are females. Meanwhile, the number of women in leadership positions has steadily increased through the years; peaking at 39 per cent in 2019. This is indicative that our local leadership truly reflects the gender balance we aspire for.”

The WEP were developed by UN Women and UN Global Compact to provide "guiding principles for businesses to achieve an equal, inclusive and sustainable future." This year's awardees will go on to compete at the regional WEP Awards in Bangkok on November 18.

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Paolo Chua
Paolo Chua is the Associate Style Editor of Esquire Philippines.
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