Fewer women in low and middle income countries like Pakistan have access to mobile internet as compared to women in other countries, says a recent report on gender gaps in technology.
It was published by Global System for Mobile Communications Arena. The report read that affordability, among other things, was a key factor behind the gender gap.
The study aimed to assess the progress in women’s financial and technological inclusion. It suggested that while progress has been recorded by at least 10% since 2017, women are still 46% behind for several reasons: affordability, illiteracy, lower awareness and lack of digital skills.
“We are seeing important progress in driving equal internet access for women, but the pace of progress still remains slow,” said GSMA Director-General Mats Granryd. He added that it is only possible for societies, businesses and economies to thrive when they let their women thrive. “Financial inclusion for women is critically important.”
The findings recorded that the women who do have access to mobile internet felt safer and better informed and had more convenience in their day-to-day lives.
The study follows the “Connected Women Commitment” initiative started in 2016 “to catalyse action to close the mobile gender gap,” according to a press statement.
According to the GSMA, over 39 mobile operators across Africa, Asia and Latin America “have made formal commitments to reduce the gender gap in their mobile money or mobile internet customer base”.