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International Women’s Day (IWD), which celebrates the social, economic, cultural and political achievement of women, is marked on 8 March each year. The House of Lords is scheduled to hold a debate to mark the day, focused on the role the UK plays in promoting gender equality globally, on Thursday 9 March 2017. Ahead of the debate, this short House of Lords Library briefing provides background information on IWD; summarises the most recent World Economic Forum (WEF) Global Gender Gap Index report which ranked the UK twentieth internationally for gender parity; presents a selection of information on the situation in the UK in relation to the four criteria used in the WEF report—economy, education, health and politics; summarises recent government statements on how the UK is working to promote gender equality globally; and recommends sources of further reading on the subject of gender parity, both in the UK and internationally.

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