International Women’s Day (IWD), celebrated on March 8 each year, is an occasion on which the world observes dreams and wishes that have been put off. But the story is different for Saudi women, who find this day an opportunity to exchange chocolates and roses to memorialize the growing renaissance movement of women.
Adopted by the UN in 1977, IWD is celebrated worldwide. Despite that, the day in Saudi Arabia has bloomed into an occasion where many workplaces and activities of private and non-profit organizations find the opportunity to remember women’s gains.
Stores across the Kingdom offer exclusive deals on this day, and many cafes hand out delicious sweets.
All this takes place away from the feminist hustle and bustle that plagues cities worldwide, where little progress on women’s demands is made each year.
IWD in 2023 comes nearly seven years after the Saudi Council of Ministers approved the Kingdom’s Vision 2023 on April 25, 2016.
Since the vision’s launch, the country has witnessed a vast movement that included improving the conditions of women as one of the strengths and pillars of the national renaissance.
According to a report issued by the General Authority for Statistics, Saudi women account for almost half of the Kingdom’s local society, standing at 49% of the total population.
Half of the Saudi women are under 27 years of age. In other words, a new generation of future women has become part of these rapid positive transformations.
Saudi Arabia has also implemented reforms to enhance women’s participation in economic development.
These reforms included unifying the retirement age for both males and females and preventing gender discrimination in terms of wages, type of job, field, and working hours.