The Free Trade Zone Consortium is reflecting on the role of women as a key element in the economy in Spain.

A year ago, the curtain fell on the third edition of the Barcelona Woman Acceleration Week (BWAW), leaving several questions in the air at the event organized by the Consorci de la Zona Franca de Barcelona (CZFB). What can Spain do to close the gender gap in terms of entrepreneurship? How can we replicate equality in internationalization (which has already been achieved in terms of innovation)? Can the economy withstand the constant loss of female talent, which accounts for 19% of GDP? Starting from Wednesday, March 6, the forum will resume that discussion thread, this time lasting three days with over 60 panelists reflecting on the role of women as a key player in the economy.

The BWAW will once again take place at the DFactory Barcelona venue in the Zona Franca of the Catalan capital. The 14 thematic sessions that make up the program will address the current situation and improvements in gender equality in the business and industrial world from specific sectors such as corporate, public, education, health, and audiovisual.

There will also be a specific talk on the 7th focusing on what business actions can be taken to achieve equality. One of the conclusions from last year’s edition is that “there are still many jobs that do not guarantee safe transportation, social security, legal regulation, and proper hiring with equality perspectives.”

Among the distinguished guests are Marta Elia Serrano Balbuena, General Secretary of Land Transport at the Ministry; Sonia Gutiérrez Muñoz, magistrate of the General Council of the Judiciary; Laura Ros Verhoeven, General Director of Volkswagen Spain; and architect Giovanna Carnevali, Urban Planning Advisor at Neom.

“There are multiple reports confirming that companies that promote equal opportunities between men and women experience greater profit growth compared to those that do not,” says Blanca Sorigué, general director of CZFB. There is also progress to be made in terms of leadership and representation. Currently, 22% of women hold positions in technology worldwide, but in Spain, women occupy 16% of science and technology positions.

In addition to attending the forum in person, which is held in collaboration with the Foundation Incyde of the Chambers of Commerce of Spain, it is possible to follow the interventions through the event’s website. The Consorci de la Zona Franca thus aims to contribute to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda. “The Barcelona Woman Acceleration Week is a clear example of our commitment to one of the Sustainable Development Goals; gender equality and empowering all women and girls,” reminds Pere Navarro, the Special Delegate of the State of the Consortium.

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