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I believe that every child is born with the potential to make a real contribution to society; and that communities and nations can achieve extraordinary things when the whole of society is truly empowered.

In our hearts we all know this, and yet we all still have some way to go to achieve true gender equality. In the meantime, all of our communities indeed our nations are being prevented from achieving our full potential.

Imagine, for a moment: a world without gender inequality. Imagine: no glass ceilings, no woman or girl cowed by violence or discrimination. Imagine 100% of the population, able to contribute 100% of their talents, 100% of the time. For all governments, this requires us to address the needs of women and girls at home, and to work together collaboratively to spread progress around the globe.

The UK Government will soon publish our new strategy on Gender Equality and Economic Empowerment. We will set out plans to dismantle the barriers that thwart women’s progress at each stage of their lives. Our ambition is to ensure that every woman in the United Kingdom has the freedom, has the support, has the skills, and the choice to do what they want to do, and achieve what they are capable of. We are working hard to ensure that women are as likely as men to succeed in the workplace.

To tackle the gender pay gap, we introduced legislation last year requiring employers to report their data. We are pleased that 10,000 have done so. This has been a catalyst for a national conversation, and has prompted many employers to take action to close that pay gap. We also remain totally committed to advancing gender equality internationally. It is at the heart of our approach to international development, international diplomacy and defence cooperation. Read more

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