The 2017 G20 Summit in Hamburg, Germany will focus on addressing global inequality and achieving inclusive growth. At the same time, we also have to take part in addressing the forgotten issue of empowering the marginalised part of society, namely women with disabilities.
In México, extraordinary wealth and heart-breaking poverty exist side by side. It is a land of harsh contradictions -- skyscrapers and wood houses, modern-day Internet and illiteracy. Years ago, when I used to think about this, I always asked myself; with all our diverse natural resources and hard-working labor force, why are we in this situation?
One of the main barriers that prevents Afghan women from entering the labuor force are traditional beliefs and biased views that women should be housewives and mothers rather than breadwinners. There is a stigma around families where the mother or daughter earns money and women's potential and abilities are severely suppressed.
Girls are judged on their appearances at times when men are for valued for their ideas; male speakers are viewed as more authoritative than their female counterparts, and women are interrupted more often than men. I have witnessed this throughout my life.
Gender stereotypes continue to trap women around the world, and we often can't even see them. People's lack of consciousness regarding the restrictions women face because of their gender, means that the inequality they face is continually perpetuated.
What can G20 leaders do to economically engage and empower girls and women? Put simply, they need to invest in the re-structuring of the educational, business and political systems which are set up to inhibit female empowerment. Education is the essential catalyst for this process. Education is essential if a girl is to become independent.
Within the past decade, awareness of the business world towards the need to empower women in the economy and workplace increased steadily. This awareness was surely inflamed by the alarming statistics on the gender gap within the economic realm.
If you took two different individuals and gave them exactly the same amount of work, it will only be logical to pay them exactly the same amount of money, right? Even more so if they are both productive and have great outcomes.
I believe that EVERY father has a vital responsibility to ensure that, from their very earliest years, his daughters believe that they can succeed in whatever they want to do in life. And that they, too, have the same rights and privileges and opportunities as their brothers.
G(irls)20 brings together a group of carefully selected young women, "delegates", equips them with leadership and communication skills and gives them the opportunity to meet with leaders from government, business and civil society. This is an excellent way of empowering young women to help them realize their full potential.