Washington: Former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has praised Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his focus on sanitation and cleanliness and called for more women participation for the world economy to recover quickly.
"I recently met with my husband with the new prime minister of India, Prime Minister Modi. He is very focused on basics like sanitation. Girls, as they get older, cannot go to school if there is no sanitation. Women can't get very far from home because there is no toilet," Hillary said yesterday.
She referred to a recent study about people working in markets in Indonesia where 90 per cent of them are women.
"There are no toilets available for women in the numbers that they represent. Think about it. It's such a simple thing. There's certainly no child care. So, is there a safe place you can leave your child while you're bustling around trying to sell in the marketplace?" she said.
Hilary said if more women could get to participate fully and get paid equal pay for equal work, the US economy as well as the economies across the world will recover at a faster rate.
"The GDP projections that have been calculated, if we could get women's labour force participation to equal men's, are really staggering. You know, in developed countries, it can be 8, 9, 10 per cent of an increase in GDP over the next 15 to 20 years. In less developed countries, it could be 30 to 40 per cent," she said.
Preparing young people for jobs available through education and training was going to be one of the most significant questions for public policy and for private sector decision-makers, Hillary said.
"We need more entrepreneurship. We need to encourage more young people to start businesses. We need more seed capital. We need more crowd funding. We need more access. We need more mentoring and teaching about business plans and how you deal with the economy and the stresses that you will face," she said.
Hillary and her husband Bill Clinton, former US President, met Modi in New York last month when the Indian Prime Minister visited the US to attend the annual session of the UN General Assembly.