The interconnection between gender and foreign direct investment (FDI) is becoming an increasingly important area for policy makers because understanding FDI’s role in enhancing gender equality and other marginalised or disadvantaged communities will bring multiple gains. Evidence now indicates that FDI is positively related to women’s employment, particularly in developing countries as a result of large-scale activities in women-dominated and labour-intensive garment and food industries. Conversely, women’s disempowerment causes staggeringly deep losses in productivity, economic activity, and human capital.
This Guide explains how the regulation of FDI has evolved, why Gender Equality and Social Inclusion (GESI) needs to be addressed in international investment treaties and the ways in which this can be implemented, along with the associated challenges. It is a basic ‘crossover’ guide for audiences based in two very different domains of policymaking: investment law and policymakers and negotiators on the one hand and gender equality ministries and civil society stakeholders, on the other.