A report card on how well New Zealand women are doing according to international benchmarks will be delivered to the United Nations convention on the elimination of all forms of discrimination against women.

Women's Affairs Minister Jo Goodhew departs tomorrow on a visit to Washington, DC and New York.

Next week she will present New Zealand's seventh report under the convention on ending discrimination against women (CEDAW).

The CEDAW report, prepared every four years, is a 'report card' on how well New Zealand women are doing, said Mrs Goodhew.


"New Zealand ranks well internationally for gender equality but there are still areas where more progress is needed.

"Women comprise the majority of tertiary students and the gender gap for median hourly earnings is now 9.6 per cent - the lowest it has been since we began measuring."

Mrs Goodhew said health outcomes for New Zealand women had continued to improve.

"Comprehensive screening programmes for breast and cervical cancer are already contributing to lower rates of women's morbidity and mortality.

"These are positive trends for women in New Zealand, however we could still do better at making the best use of women's skills in leadership and the economy and reducing our rate of family violence."

Mrs Goodhew will also attend meetings to discuss best practice and new ideas for progressing gender equality, particularly in the complex and challenging areas of reducing the remaining gender pay gap and increasing women's safety from violence.