The Secretary General of the Pacific Islands Forum, Greg Urwin, says more work needs to be done to improve the status of women in society.
Marking today's International Women's Day, Mr Urwin says it's a time to reflect on how women contribute so much to safeguarding and improving the way of life in the region.
He says the region has witnessed the important contribution of women in addressing conflict in Bougainville and the Solomon Islands, and he says they'll continue to play an essential role in the peace and reconstruction process.
Mr Urwin says security, political stability and sustainable development in the Pacific can't be achieved without the proper enabling conditions.
He says this includes gender equality, respect for the human rights of all citizens, and addressing the complex of issues involved in human security, such as violence against women.