Ikea removed women from the directory in Saudi Arabia
Ikea has removed virtually all women from the pictures in the catalog company in Saudi Arabia.
In most other countries the Ikea catalog quite the same. But furniture giant has made sure to create a separate version for Saudi Arabia, writes the Swedish newspaper Metro.
Here are almost all women, many girls airbrushed away from the pictures. While directories in other countries have four designers at the front, there are only three in the Saudi edition. A female designer is removed from the picture.
In another picture a woman with earrings, bare feet and a small neck had become a man with black socks.
The arch-conservative and strict Muslim Saudi Arabia, women not allowed to drive or walk alone on the streets. The Swedish Trade Minister Ewa Björling think Ikea pictures is a sad example of how the country has "a long way to go" when it comes to gender equality.
This is what happens when corporate profitability collides with social norms. Before we too quickly look down our noses at IKEA it might be better to examine the impact of other less conspicuous corporate policies. Child labor and environmental pollution in other countries come to mind but I'm sure the list is much longer.