Women Representation in Parliaments in Asia
Womens’ representation in the political structure has always been a waxing issue for the Asian countries. The World Bank data shows that over the last decade the socio-political changes have offered women opportunities to participate in the political structure and as a result the number of women parliamentarians has seen a significant increase.
Philippines and Nepal has the highest number of women parliamentarians in Asia with 30% women legislatures in both the countries. It is significant jump for both the countries from 9% and 6% a decade back respectively.
Laos has a total of 28% of women in parliament while Vietnam follows closely with 27% of women parliamentarians.
China hasn’t progressed much from a decade back as compared to rise in other countries. It has increased the political participation for women only by 4 per cent. In 1997 the Chinese parliament had 21% women representation while as in 2017 it just rose to 24%.
It is followed by Singapore with 23% women and 21% in Pakistan. Bangladesh has 20% women participation.
Cambodia has made a visible stride in raising the percentage of women in the political system. From no women in politics a decade back the country has 20% women representation in parliament as of 2017. Mongolia and South Korea each has 17% womens’ representation.
Indian parliament has a 12% representation by women. Although there has been a long term bill pending demanding the extension of reservation to 33 per cent, the bill has been pending for a long term. India is followed by Malaysia with 10 per cent reservation.
Japan has a 10% participation of women in the parliament. Recently the country passed a law encouraging more women to take part in politics. “Under the new law, political parties are urged to make the number of male and female candidates as equal as possible and are encouraged to set targets for gender parity”.
Brunei and Sri Lanka has 9 and 6 per cent of womens’ representation. With only 5 % Thailand has the lowest political representation of women in Asia.