German Chancellor Angela Merkel has topped Forbes Most Powerful Women’s List 2019. Forbes’ does an annual ranking of influential and powerful women in the fields of politics, business as well as entertainment. 2019’s list has seen several inspiring women but Angela Merkel continues to occupy the number one spot. This is her ninth year topping the list.

The Chancellor

As the German Chancellor, Angela Merkel is the only female commander-in-chief of a G20 nation. Merkel is also the first female Chancellor of Germany. In today’s world, only five percent of government heads are women. Women also hold only 24 percent of parliamentary seats. However, the rise of women in global politics is undeniable. Women are slowly shaping the policy-making of developed countries. Angela Merkel has been the German Chancellor since 2005. She has been referred to as the de facto leader of the European Union as she heads the fourth largest economy in the world and the EU’s largest member state. Many call her the leader of the free world. However, she has announced her plans to retire from political life entirely following the end of her term in 2021.

Key Achievements:

  • Became first female chancellor of Germany and youngest person to occupy the position in 2005.
  • Won the Indira Gandhi prize in 2013.
  • Awarded US Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2011.
  • In 2011, she decided to phase out nuclear power, setting a precedent for other nations.
  • Allowed in thousands of migrants from war-torn regions of Syria and Afghanistan despite resistance.

Also Read: Angela Merkel To Retire As German Chancellor And Party Leader 

Her Achievements

Forbes, in the list, has praised her for her “steely reserve, from standing up to Donald Trump to allowing more than a million Syrian refugees into Germany.” In the 2018 list, following the announcement of Merkel as the most powerful woman of the year, Forbes emphasised the impact she has had as leader of the Christian Democratic Union and as chancellor of Germany.

Angela Merkel handled the economic crisis in Germany unlike other European leaders. She also managed to fend off a long-term recession in Germany. As a result, Germany flourished in the crisis. Her other achievements over her long career as Chancellor include energy reform. Soon after Fukushima disaster, Merkel made the surprise announcement that she would shut eight of Germany’s 17 nuclear reactors and that the others would be phased out by 2022. This won her global support and Germany appeared a world leader in energy reform and tackling global warming. She also contested Trump’s immigration ban in 2017.

It is also important to note that she is a Protestant, childless, East German woman leading the Christian Democratic Union which is a male-dominated, largely Catholic party, with its roots in West Germany. This has changed not only the party but arguably also German society. Her power and influence has led to new policy direction on women’s issues as well as introduced female quotas into the boardroom.

Other Names In The List

Coming second in the list is Christine Lagarde, president of the European Central Bank. She previously served as managing director of the International Monetary Fund. Last year, she placed 22nd on the most powerful people in the world list. Following Lagarde is Nancy Pelosi.  She is the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives since January 2019. Pelosi is the first woman to hold this position in the history of the United States.

Greta Thunberg, the young climate activist who has made waves in 2019, is 100 on the Forbes list.

Also Read: Here’s All That German Chancellor Angela Merkel Did On Her India Visit 

Picture Credits: Csmonitor

Prapti is an intern at SheThePeople.TV

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