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Boardroom quotas for women - Important step for redressing a major outstanding barrier to gender equality


14 Nov 2012


EU Priorities 2020
Social Europe & Jobs

he European Commission today presented a proposal aimed at introducing an EU quota for a 40% representation of women on advisory boards. The Greens welcomed the much anticipated proposal as a first step, whilst highlighting the need to strengthen a number of provisions. Commenting on the proposals, Green equality spokesperson Marije Cornelissen said:

"Today's proposals are an important step for redressing one of the major outstanding barriers to gender equality in Europe. While the Greens would have hoped for more ambition, notably ensuring the quota applies to executive boards and as regards the enforcement of the quota, we are happy the legislative process has been launched and we will look to strengthen the proposals in the European Parliament. Ultimately we should be aiming for parity in boardrooms but at least we are now moving in the right direction."


Greens/EFA co-president Rebecca Harms continued:


"In spite of all the lip service, women are still grossly under-represented on the boards of large European companies, with the share of women in the highest decision-making bodies of the largest publically-listed companies at a mere 14%. This is not because of a shortage of qualified women, with 60% of university graduates in the EU being women, but because the voluntary approach has unfortunately failed. Binding quotas have already proven successful in addressing this equality gap in European countries and it is time we built on this success by introducing an EU-level quota."

Richard More O'Ferrall,
Press and media officer,
Greens/EFA group in the European Parliament
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