PESHAWAR, June 24, 2021 – The United States government, through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), today launched the Women’s Economic Empowerment Activity (WEEA). This five-year initiative supports the Government of Pakistan’s efforts to promote women’s social and economic empowerment through safe and dignified access to income opportunities, information, resources, and services.

The WEEA program offers solutions for women, communities, and governments to address structural and socio-economic barriers that prevent women from fully participating in their communities.  It also aims to reduce economic gaps and make progress toward gender equality, at both the community and institutional levels.  In accordance with Pakistan’s national strategy, WEEA demonstrates the United States’ commitment to promote gender equality and women’s empowerment by helping women and girls attain their full potential in every aspect of society.

“USAID proudly partners with the Government of Pakistan to promote peaceful communities, increase economic growth, and strengthen global health security capacities,” said USAID Mission Director Julie Koenen.  “The Women’s Economic Empowerment Activity is yet another manifestation of our commitment to enabling women-led business that will play an important role in Pakistan’s economic growth.”

“A nation is considered on the path to prosperity if all its citizens are empowered,” said Akbar Ayab Khan, Minister for Local Government, Election, and Rural Development in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.  “Women’s empowerment has been one of my government’s top priorities and an essential part of our governance.  Our vision is to elevate women’s labor force participation by 45 percent by 2025.  We thank USAID for partnering with us and taking our work forward.”

A component of this project will facilitate the Computerized National Identity Card (CNIC) registration of 1.25 million women in 49 districts across Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Sindh, and Punjab provinces.  The initiative complements the Election Commission of Pakistan’s efforts to bridge the gap between male and female voters in Pakistan, which focuses on increasing women’s participation in the electoral process by mobilizing unregistered women to acquire CNICs.

For more information on USAID assistance programs in the Economic Growth and Agriculture sector: https://www.usaid.gov/pakistan/economic-growth-agriculture