New Delhi: There are 57 million more men than women globally, a UN report said. While much progress has been made in ensuring the equal status of women and men in many areas, much needs to be done in closing the gender gap in areas like power and decision making positions, it said.
The report, "The World's Women 2010: Trends and Statistics", was released by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) Wednesday on the occasion of World Statistics Day.
The UN General Assembly in June proclaimed Oct 20 as World Statistics Day to recognise the importance of statistics in shaping societies.
The report showed that women globally have "benefited" from gender statistics in the last decade.
It said Europe has more women than men. But in some of the most populous countries, there was a "shortage" of women. This included China, where the ratio is 108 men per 100 women.
"We know that statistics are a vital tool for economic and social planning," Keiko Osaki-Tomita, chief of Demographic and Social Statistics Branch (DSSB) of DESA, said at a press conference.
"Statistics are essential for academic research, business planning and budget allocation," he added.
Published every five years, the statistics covered eight key areas - population and families, health, education, work, power and decision-making, violence against women, environment and poverty.
Under power and decision-making, the report said that Asia-Pacific trails the rest of the world in the share of women ministers with less than 10 per cent of ministers in governments in the region being women.
Around the world, only seven of 150 elected heads of state and only 11 of 192 heads of government were women.
The report said: "In the private sector, women are on most board of directors of large companies but their number remains low compared to men." Furthermore, the "glass ceiling" has hindered women's access to leadership positions in private companies.
"This is especially notable in the largest corporations, which remain male-dominated. Of the 500 largest corporations in the world, only 13 have a female chief executive officer," it added.
Also, earning gaps between women and men are wider in the Asia-Pacific region compared to Latin America and developed countries -- women's average wage in the manufacturing sector being less than 70 percent than that of men's.
However, the report said that over the years women have entered most of the male dominated fields.
From a global perspective, the publication paints a mixed picture of the condition of women in Asia-Pacific.
The report was launched simultaneously in New York, Shanghai and Bangkok.