Backgrounder: Canadian Minister of Finance Becomes International Gender Champion

The Honourable Bill Morneau, Minister of Finance, will become an International Gender Champion, as announced on the margins of the iW50 Summit, in Paris, France. As the first Finance Minister to become an International Gender Champion, Minister Morneau is making concrete commitments to advance gender equality.

About the International Gender Champion initiative

The International Gender Champions, a tri-partite initiative, was founded with the United Nations at Geneva in 2015 to create a platform for senior international leaders to unite in building a world where gender differences do not prevent individuals from achieving their potential. Champions include leaders from a broad spectrum of governments, civil society and major international organizations. As part of Canada’s G7 Presidency, Minister Morneau is inviting his G7 counterparts to join him in becoming International Gender Champions.

Commitments to advance gender equality

International Gender Champions are required to make measurable, results-oriented commitments that can be accomplished in one year to advance gender equality within their portfolios and spheres of influence. Minister Morneau is making the following commitments:

1. To ensure rigorous gender budgeting as a means to achieve greater equality and inclusion.

This commitment builds upon the important progress made in Budget 2018, which for the first time included a Gender Results Framework, as well as Canada’s commitment to introduce legislation to enshrine gender-based analysis in the federal government’s budgetary and financial management processes. This commitment also aligns with the recommendation of the Gender Equality Advisory Council for Canada’s G7 Presidency to integrate gender-based analysis throughout policy development and implementation.

2. To achieve gender parity in Canadian appointments to the board of International Financial Institutions for which the Minister of Finance is governor, and to instruct these appointees to prioritize gender equality in their work at these institutions.

Canada is already demonstrating leadership on gender equality, with female Executive Directors representing Canada at the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, both of whom have strongly promoted gender equality and advocated for increased representation of women in senior management roles at these institutions.

In addition, International Gender Champions take the “Panel Parity Pledge,” through which they commit to no longer sit on same-sex panels, reflecting the importance of having a diversity of perspectives represented. For more information about the International Gender Champions initiative, visit https://www.genderchampions.com.