Second Eurasian Women's Forum comes to a close in St Petersburg
The Second Eurasian Women's Forum took place in St Petersburg from 19 to 21 September 2018. The core events on its business programme were held in the Tavricheskiy Palace and the Parliamentary Centre, with individual meetings organised in the Universe of Water Museum Complex. The Forum was organised by the Federation Council and the Interparliamentary Assembly of Member Nations of the Commonwealth of Independent States with the support of a number of ministries and government agencies. The Forum enjoyed the support of the Roscongress Foundation.
The highlight of the event was the plenary session entitled ‘Women for Global Security and Sustainable Development,’ featuring an address by President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin. The head of the Russian state welcomed Forum organisers and guests. He noted that the reach of the Forum extended beyond the scope of this continent. “There are many excellent historical examples of women assuming responsibility for important decisions that shaped the fate of entire states and nations. In today's complex, rapidly changing world, women are energetically and successfully proving themselves in a variety of industries and playing an increasingly important role in strengthening peace and security and resolving critical socio-economic and humanitarian problems, which is absolutely natural for a woman,” the Russian President emphasized.
According to him, the world and its states will only benefit from a surplus of women's success stories.
The Second Eurasian Women's Forum brought together approximately 2000 politicians, entrepreneurs, scientists and public figures from 110 countries. Business sessions, panel discussions, business dialogues, thematic business breakfasts, expert and strategic sessions were held as part of the business programme. Discussions took place in three thematic areas: ‘Women for Global Security and Sustainable Development,’ ‘Promoting a Female Agenda: International Cooperation’ and ‘Global Initiatives in Women’s Interests and New Opportunities.’
Forum participants focused particularly on special sessions organised by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), UNESCO, the World Bank, the Women 20 sessions, the BRICS Women's Business Club, the APEC seminar and the presentation of a report by the World Health Organization. Successful cross-border business dialogues and thematic business breakfasts were held. Meetings between the business communities of Russia, France, Germany, India and China took place as part of the Women’s Forum. The Forum programme was further enhanced by the ‘Made in Russia: Exports Created by Women’ exhibition of projects spearheaded by female exporters, presentations of success stories, a volunteer marathon and a colourful presentation of collections by Russian female designers.
Summing up the event, Speaker of the Federation Council Valentina Matvienko stressed that “the Forum had managed to work out measures to further expand the role of women in politics, the economy and the public service. We have got a common agenda, an understanding of existing problems, ways to solve them, and most importantly, a desire to work together,” the Speaker of the Federation Council said.
According to her, the Forum’s goals were outlined in an outcome document that would be sent to heads of state, government, parliament, to the United Nations and other international organizations.
The Forum is held every three years in St Petersburg on an ongoing basis. As part of the outcome document adopted at the Second Eurasian Women's Forum, it has been proposed that the next Forum be held in 2021 with the status of Global Women's Forum.