Members of the OCA Gender Equity Committee received an update on the upcoming seminar ©Getty Images

Sheikha Hayat bint Abdulaziz Al Khalifa, the chair of the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) Gender Equity Committee, updated members on the planning and preparation of the organisation's upcoming gender equity seminar, which is due to be held prior to the Hangzhou 2022 Asian Games.

The Bahraini official held an online meeting with the Committee where she expressed her hope that all 45 National Olympic Committees (NOC) will be present at the anticipated gathering in Bahrain next month.

The two-day seminar is designed to create greater gender equality across Asia by discussing with NOCs over their role in improving women's participation and representation, forming new grassroots strategies and introduce better practices.

"OCA is working hard to achieve gender equality in Asia in line with the International Olympic Committee strategic roadmap," Sheikha Hayat said.

"OCA is also working hard to achieve shared goals to activate and support Gender Equity Committees among Asian National Olympic Committees, from implementing regional activities to engaging men and women to work on this priority agenda to involve more women in the decision-making process.

Sheikha Hayat bint Abdulaziz Al Khalifa affirmed that men must take responsibility for creating gender equality ©Getty Images
Sheikha Hayat bint Abdulaziz Al Khalifa affirmed that men must take responsibility for creating gender equality ©Getty Images

"Gender equality is the responsibility of a society, men and women, all of them, for development; it is not the responsibility of women only."

She added that the seminar, set for between October 30 and 31, will underpin this "crucial target".

OCA, which is staging the seminar in cooperation with the International Olympic Committee and Bahrain Olympic Committee, has invited the secretary general and head of women in sport of every NOC.

Tony Tarraf, the head of athletes development department and special projects at OCA, gave Committee members details of a continental programme the body is conducting under Olympic Solidarity that aims to enhance women’s engagement and empowerment.

Further events are being planned across Mongolia, Palestine, Bahrain, Bhutan, Cambodia and the United Arab Emirates as the continent looks forward to the postponed 2022 Asian Games in China.

The event is scheduled to take place from September 23 to October 8 2023, after it was delayed earlier this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.