The female employment level in Afghanistan has fallen sharply since the Taliban administration took over in 2021, according to a new report released by the International Labour Organization (ILO).
The ILO stated that female employment had dropped 25% by the final quarter of 2022 compared to the second quarter of 2021, while male employment levels dropped 7% in the same period.
The report added that the restrictions on women’s participation in the labour market have contributed to the decline since Taliban authorities came to power.
According to Ramin Behzad, Senior Coordination of the ILO for Afghanistan, “Restrictions on girls and women have severe implications for their education and labour market prospects.”
“Providing equal access for all young women and men to quality education and training as well as decent and productive employment opportunities remain a key challenge and priority for the future of the Afghan economy and society,” he added.
Since August 2021, several decrees have been issued by the de facto government, which restricted most female employees from working with Non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and banned girls from secondary school, attending colleges and higher education.
The restrictions also disturbed the humanitarian aid by the international organizations as most of them relied on the Afghan female staff in the country.
Moreover, Since the Taliban takeover, the country’s economy has jumped into crisis due to the abrupt cut of foreign development aid and freeze of the country’s assets, leading to the loss of more than 900,000 jobs.
Meanwhile, the statement said that labour incomes had taken a beating and are becoming more unstable, particularly hurting households struggling with rising food and consumer prices.