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Trimming the workplace gender gap by half could lift GDP growth rates, OECD says in new report

PARIS – A new report says governments looking to boost growth should focus on further narrowing the “gender gap” that continues to hold women back in education, employment and entrepreneurship.

Women continue to earn less than men, are less likely to make it to the top of the career ladder and are more likely to spend their final years in poverty, according to “Closing the Gender Gap,” released Monday by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

Trimming or eliminating this discrimination could provide a significant source of growth for ailing economies, the OECD says: on average, a 50 per cent decrease in the gender gap in labour force participation would lead to a 0.3 percentage point increase in annual GDP per-capita growth rate in OECD countries.