Press Release: DFC Announces $1 Billion W-GDP 2X Asia Initiative
U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) Chief Executive Officer Adam Boehler today announced W-GDP 2X Asia, a commitment to mobilize $1 billion of investment to advance women’s economic empowerment in Asia. Through the initiative, DFC aims to mobilize capital and incentivize action from the private sector to achieve scalable and sustainable impact for economically empowering women in the region. The announcement was made during a virtual event featuring keynote remarks by Boehler and a fireside chat with female entrepreneurs.
“When we invest in women, the world improves,” said Boehler. “I am proud to round out our regional commitments with W-GDP 2X Asia, which underscores DFC’s commitment to eliminating the barriers that prevent women from achieving full economic empowerment.”
Promoting women’s economic empowerment is proven to foster equitable and sustainable economic prosperity, greater stability, and national security. However, pervasive gender disparities prevent women from reaching their full potential. Research suggests that advancing women’s equality across the Asia-Pacific could add $4.5 trillion to the region’s collective annual GDP by 2025, a 12% increase over the business-as-usual trajectory. The White House’s Council of Economic Advisors (CEA) found in their report, “The W-GDP Index,” that fully removing the legal barriers to women’s economic activity could increase annual GDP by $7.7 trillion, or 8.3 percent, with the majority of these gains coming from South Asia, East Asia, and the Pacific.
The W-GDP 2X Asia initiative, DFC’s fourth regional commitment to investing in women, seeks to mobilize $1 billion in private sector solutions that advance women’s economic empowerment. The W-GDP 2X Asia Initiative is an opportunity for private sector partners to join DFC in its commitment to addressing the barriers women face in the region. Leaders in W-GDP 2X Asia will commit to supporting investees that value women as entrepreneurs, leaders, employees, and consumers. The initiative exemplifies DFC’s strong commitment to unlocking new opportunities for women-owned, women-led, and women-supporting business across Asia and globally.
At the virtual event, Boehler also highlighted a new DFC partial credit guaranty that will support the Women’s Livelihood Bond series in the issuance of $150 million in innovative debt securities. This issuance will advance the mission of W-GDP 2X Asia by creating sustainable livelihoods for over three million underserved women and women entrepreneurs in developing countries.
W-GDP 2X Asia falls under DFC’s broader W-GDP 2X Women’s Initiative, a key component of the White House-led Women’s Global Development and Prosperity (W-GDP) Initiative. Since its inception, the W-GDP 2X Initiative has mobilized more than $7 billion of investment in projects that are owned by women, led by women, or provide a product or service that empowers women. DFC has made three previous regional commitments under W-GDP 2X, representing unprecedented investment in the women’s economic empowerment, covering all regions of the world, including W-GDP 2X Africa, W-GDP 2X Americas, and W-GDP 2X MENA.
Photo courtesy of Meena Kadri.