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00:00:00
>>
APPLAUSE
>> China presented its new top leaders to the world on Wednesday, all seven of them, men. And that's not just a fluke, one rung down in the ruling 25-member politburo, there is only one woman. The communist party works hard on its image as a representative of the masses.
00:00:19
Some female delegates from around the country are invited to big political events, like the party congress that just ended in Beijing. But as Reuter's John Ruwitch explains, there's more than meets the eye.>> During these events, the majority of the delegates are men wearing dark suits, there are however, women delegates, I saw some women police.
00:00:39
There are also minority delegates, these are people who usually come from peripheral areas of China, Tibet, Yunnan province, Xinjiang province. Often, they show up wearing their traditional garb, and some of the women delegates are also from these areas. According to one analyst I spoke to, the women delegates from these areas and women delegates in general, are kinda decoration at these events.
00:01:02
>> China's founder, Mao Zedong once famously said that women hold up half the sky. In the early days, women were drafted into the workforce and politics. But critics say that today, they're losing ground as traditional gender expectations make a comeback, helped on by the communist party.>> First, the party is historically very male-centric, and that's likely to continue.
00:01:23
Secondly, according to one analyst I spoke to, the party has become alarmed at the demographic situation in China. The workforce is shrinking, the population is aging and birth rates are falling. So it's been targeting women in cities to have more babies, to settle down, to have kids.>> Out of 144 countries in a gender gap report from last year, China ranked 74th.
00:01:45
One analyst warned that the problem isn't going to go away anytime soon. And that even if women get more positions in the government, they wouldn't necessarily get the power to make a difference.