Even It Up

Women in Kanchanpur dependent for livelihood on sand mining.

Women in Kanchanpur dependent for livelihood on sand mining. Photo credit: Oxfam

Income inequality is rising in many countries but at very different speeds. Nepal has also observed rising economic inequality in the recent past; as revealed by the gini coefficient and palma ratio. Such an inequality breeds and reinforces poverty, gender inequality, marginalization, and exclusion. In Nepal, the key drivers of the inequality include unequal access to natural resources especially land, unfair tax system which puts more burden on poor women and men through indirect taxation; lower spending on essential public services hence affecting access to quality public education, health services and social protection, gender inequality especially the unequal burden of unpaid care work, and lower wages and denial of basic rights of workers. Economic inequality is inextricably linked to inequality of power. For instance, women and people from poor communities are often ignored and excluded from political decision-making.   

Inequality is not inevitable. It is the result of political choices. There are solutions to addressing the inequality crisis in Nepal; including access to land, a fair fiscal system creating equal opportunities for all especially girls and women; fair work and wages; and allowing more space in political decision making. With the right political will and choice, Nepal can reverse its alarming inequality trend. To have a good understanding of how economic inequality manifests itself in the Nepalese context through the country’s various deep rooted multiple inequalities, Oxfam in Nepal is commissioning a research on inequality issues. The narrative it develops is expected to help us go into the root causes of inequality in the country and help to devise better campaign strategies and inform programmatic interventions. Purpose of the research is therefore to identify inequality trends, drivers, intersections, consequences and policy interventions that are relevant at the national level.

Know more about Oxfam's Inequality Campaign which is also known as Even It Up by clicking here