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New ILO report shows that 4.2% of CEOs are female in LAC but still room for progress at the top (MEDIA)

LIMA (ILO News) – Women in Latin America and the Caribbean, where only 4.2 percent of CEOs are female, have still made substantial progress in taking business and management positions and are increasingly driving economic growth, a new ILO report finds.

The report entitled Women in business and management: Gaining momentum in Latin America and the Caribbean, by the International Labour Organization’s (ILO) Bureau for Employers’ Activities (ACT/EMP), will be launched at a regional conference to be held here today. The one-day conference will bring together business leaders and representatives of employers’ organizations from across the region to discuss the progress made and obstacles to women’s advancement in the workplace, particularly at top management levels.

With an increasing number of skilled women professionals, Latin America and the Caribbean is set to become a global leader in gender diversity in business and management. The women’s labor force participation rate in the region increased from 48.5 percent in 2006 to 49.7 percent in 2016 – in stark contrast to the decline of the global rate during the same period. The report thus provides clear evidence that more women in the region have made their way in the world of work.

The report also shows that the number of women tertiary graduates exceeds that of men in all countries in the region where data is available. Today, many more women are occupying professional, middle and senior managerial positions.

In most countries in the region, over 30 percent of all managers are women, and in 19 countries they represent 40 percent or more of managers, on a par with the most developed nations in Europe and North America. With 59 percent of all managers being women, Jamaica has the highest proportion of women managers, not only in the region but in the world, followed by Belize, the Cayman Islands and Colombia with 50 percent or more.

Yet women are still noticeably absent from the ranks of top management. The most recent data and research in the report indicate that the region lags behind others in the proportion of female chief executive officers (CEOs) and board members.

Among the 1,259 listed companies in Latin America and the Caribbean, women represent only 4.2 percent of CEOs. What’s more, nearly half of executive boards in the region are entirely male and on average only 8.5 percent of board members are women.

“We need to create opportunities and the right conditions for women to succeed and to maintain the momentum created across the region." Deborah France-Massin, Director of ACT/EMP
“The business case is stronger than ever. Gender diversity at all levels of management and leadership positions provides a competitive edge. Businesses in Latin America and the Caribbean have made substantial progress but much more attention is required at the executive level where we know progress has been slow to date,” says the ILO’s Director of ACT/EMP, Deborah France-Massin. “We need to create opportunities and the right conditions for women to succeed and to maintain the momentum created across the region.”

The conference, organized by the ILO-ACT/EMP with the National Confederation of Private Business Institutions (CONFIEP), is part of wider efforts to speed up progress in gender diversity in the region. The conference will be followed by a workshop with representatives of employers’ organizations aimed at further promoting gender diversity among their national members.

Traditional societal gender roles and greater family responsibilities for women were found to be among the top barriers to women’s leadership. One indicator here is the number of hours spent in unpaid work.

In 10 countries in Latin America, women spent on average between 1.7 and 3.5 times more hours in unpaid work than men per week – in other words, double to over triple the time that men contribute to such work, according to the report.

Moreover, gender pay gaps persist across the region. While the gaps fall within the average global range of between 0 and 45 percent, the widening of the gap at managerial level is of concern. This is a significant barrier that prevents talented women from striving for and thriving in top management positions.

The glass ceiling is still in place in Latin America and the Caribbean. However, the report highlights that more women in the region are moving into non-support managerial roles such as research and product development, operations and general management rather than following the global trend of being clustered into functions such as human resources, public relations, and communications.

The region is thus showing clear signs of progress and raises hopes that the glass ceiling can soon be overcome.

“With momentum building economically, politically and socially, now is the time to ensure that we work to break down the barriers and utilize the many strengths of the entire talent pool. Conferences such as this one provide an important opportunity to reflect on progress and provide a roadmap for the future,” concludes José Manuel Salazar-Xirinachs, ILO Assistant Director-General and Regional Director for Latin America and the Caribbean.

Expedia Opens Cuban Market for Consumers in the Caribbean and the World Travelers can now book hotels in Cuba through global Expedia group websites

Miami, FL:---  May 23, 2016 – The Expedia group, the world’s largest online travel agency, announced today their expansion to the Cuban market that will allow Cuban hoteliers to sell inventory through global Expedia group sites as well as allow travelers to book hotels in the island destination.

The addition of Cuba’s hotel inventory in Expedia’s Caribbean portfolio will open new possibilities for inter-Caribbean and multi-destination travel that may boost growth throughout the region. The Expedia group works closely with partners throughout the Caribbean to ensure that they thrive as the region evolves using tailored strategies and regional data to take advantage of the fast-changing market.

According to the Caribbean Tourism Organization’s 2016 Industry Performance Report, travel within the region increased for the second straight year, a clear sign of interest by Caribbean travelers in exploring their neighboring countries. According to the Cuban Ministry of Tourism, over four million tourists visited Cuba in 2016, up 13% from the previous year. Among those visitors were over 614,000 Americans, up 34% from the year before. Because of the high interest in the island nation, destinations are already seeing the potential in multi-destination travel promotion, specifically when the Tourism Minister of Jamaica signed an agreement with his counterpart in Cuba to facilitate multi-destination marketing between the countries, during the 2016 Jamaica Product Exchange (JAPEX).

Per the New York Times, international companies are already looking to Cuba to take advantage of the destination’s rising popularity with US consumers. A new International Monetary Fund study states that if U.S. travel restrictions are lifted it could result in 3 - 5.6 million U.S. arrivals in Cuba with most of the boost coming from visitors who have never traveled to the Caribbean before. If restrictions are lifted, the Cuban government will have a higher chance to achieve their goal of 10 million visitors by 2030 – per the New York Times. Leaders like St. Lucia’s Prime Minister Allen M. Chastanet is excited about the potential that Cuba will have in opening up tourists’ appetites for the Caribbean region as a whole – according to the Miami Herald.

“We’ve been working around the clock with Cuban hoteliers to offer this iconic, culture-rich destination to our global consumers, with the added convenience of online booking through a trusted travel partner,” said Demetrius Canton, Director of market management for the Caribbean. “We are excited to finally announce our expansion into Cuba, which will hopefully allow us to dive deeper into the Caribbean region and help our partners thrive. By further strengthening the value proposition that we offer, our local teams will continue to help hotel partners set their distribution strategy and take advantage of trends to reach and surpass their bottom line.”

“We are excited to make Barceló properties in Cuba accessible to travelers on Expedia platforms around the world,” said, Josep Brichs, Corporate Commercial Director for Barceló Hotel Group Latin America. “ We are very proud Barcelo Solymar and Barceló Arenas Blancas in Varadero have been one of the first bookings made on Expedia upon the opening of the destination. Expedia is a key partner and our priority is to develop new opportunities on the international travel industry together."

TelEm Group offices closed Thursday and Friday.

telemoffice23052017Pond Island:---- TelEm Group has informed the general public of its office closing hours for the Ascension Day holiday.

In keeping with the observance of the day, all TelEm Group offices, with the exception of TelCell’s Harbor location, will be closed on Thursday, May 25th and also on Friday, May 26th, 2017.

The company’s Grand Marche location will re-open for business on Saturday, May 27th from 8:00 am until 4:00 pm with all other locations opening at regular business hours on Monday, May 29th, 2017.

TelEm Group meantime takes this opportunity to wish the general public and customers a safe and enjoyable and reflective Ascension Day holiday

CIBC FIRSTCARIBBEAN NAMED BEST RETAIL BANK IN BARBADOS Global Banking and Finance Review magazine hails bank for “commitment to excellence”.

Barbados:---- CIBC FirstCaribbean International Bank has been named the “Best Retail Bank in Barbados”.
Leading print and online magazine, Global Banking and Finance Review awarded the Barbados business of the regional bank in recognition of its continued commitment to excellence in retail banking.
“CIBC FirstCaribbean International Bank’s commitment to retail banking is reflected in their strategic vision, organizational structure and strong risk management which contributed to their outstanding performance for the year,” said Wanda Rich, Editor, and Global Banking & Finance Review.
“They have demonstrated a strong commitment to enhancing customer experience through including value added services and client surveys. We look forward to seeing further growth and industry-leading solutions from them in the years to come,” she added.
CIBC FirstCaribbean’s Managing Director, Barbados Operating Company, Donna Wellington said the award was “testament to the commitment of our staff at all levels, to go that extra mile every day to ensure we meet the varied needs of all of our clients both in-branch and online.”
Managing Director, Retail, Business and International Banking, Mark St. Hill said the award was “especially gratifying for our retail staff who are on the front lines working with our clients to ensure they receive superior banking products and services which fit their lives”.
The awards honor companies that stand out in particular areas of expertise in the banking and finance industry. CIBC FirstCaribbean International Bank was selected as this year’s Best Retail Bank in Barbados because of the company’s outstanding achievements and dedication to retail banking and by performing well in the following categories according to the judging panel:

•Dedication to client relations
•Launching of new mobile banking application
•Loan processes and performance
•Strong Corporate Governance and Risk Management in place
•Continued investment in technology
•Positive impact on the community they serve through financial support and volunteer efforts.
CIBC FirstCaribbean operates in 17 territories across the English and Dutch Caribbean.

Chuchubi selected mother of the year.

mothersdaybasket22052017PHILIPSBURG:---The Chuchubi Foundation selected Mrs. Dorene Richardson as their Mother of the year and presented her a gift basket.

Mrs. Doreen Richardson is a devoted Methodist who has given of her time as a Sunday School Teacher and steward for over 40 years. Although well- advanced in age, she continues to serve in the St Peters Methodist Congregation.

The Chuchubi Foundation congratulates Mrs. Doreen Richardson and wishes her continued strength and God’s guidance.

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