(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Sheikh Abdullah bin Mohammed bin Saud Al Thani, Chairman, Ooredoo Group, called for companies around the world to increase the role of women in business.
In a speech at 'Gender and the Economy' hosted by World Bank Group's International Finance Corporation in Washington on Monday, he highlighted work being done in emerging markets to address gender inequality in the business sphere.
He also encouraged businesses to engage women as customers and key partners in their success.
"Achieving women's participation in the private sector has been an essential aspect of Ooredoo's business, and I believe it is also a critical driver of growth in economies and societies," he said.
"From Ooredoo's recent research among more than 10,500 young adults in 17 countries in the Middle East and North Africa, we know that 72 percent of men and 77 percent of women agree that women should be given equal business opportunities. While this hopefully signifies a generational shift in attitudes about women's economic empowerment tomorrow, I am calling for every business to engage women as customers and key partners in success today," he said.
Sheikh Abdullah participated in a panel discussion with Cherie Blair, Founder of the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women, and Beth Comstock, Senior Vice-President, Chief Marketing Officer, GE.
The panel, moderated by Benjamin Skinner, Co-Founder and Senior Vice-President, Tau Investment Management, addressed the importance of men's involvement in efforts to include women in the private sector and changes for reaching gender equality in the sector.
Sheikh Abdullah was recently appointed to the World Bank Group Advisory Council on Gender and Development, dedicated to promoting gender equality around the world.
As the first for a private sector representative from the Middle East, his appointment reflects Ooredoo's ongoing engagement in women's empowerment initiatives across its footprint, and his personal commitment with these issues.