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The toolkit, produced by UN Women, includes practical advice for business looking to diversify their supply chains to support women and suggests a definition and eligibility criteria firms should adopt to avoid tokenism and fraud when choosing suppliers.
Ravi Karkara, deputy executive director at UN Women, which became operational in 2011 to promote gender equality, said the toolkit supported its “women’s empowerment principles”, a set of measures to help companies promote equality and empower women through the way they do business.
“Recently we worked with Citibank to create a toolkit on simple rules for procurement,” Karkara told SM on the sidelines of an event hosted by The People Space. “[For example] saying 50 percent of our procurement practices go to women-owned businesses — UN Women does this, and so does the rest of the UN now as well.
“Procurement and advertising can change things,” said Karkara. “It's an opportunity for procurement to advocate and be the voice.”
In 2013 women owned more than a third of firms internationally, yet these businesses received just 1 percent of corporate procurement spend, UN Women said.
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