ECONOMY

Promoting representation of women on company boards

Promoting representation of women on company boards

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen is making a new push at boosting women’s representation on company boards, trying to unblock European legislation for a women’s quota that has been stuck since 2012.

Brussels proposed then that listed companies in the bloc must fill at least 40% of non-executive board seats with women.

The target would be reached by giving priority to the candidate of the under-represented sex when equally qualified persons apply for the same job.

The proposed directive does not set out sanctions, but companies not achieving the goal would have to explain why and spell out what steps they will take to meet the target.

Greece is one of just eight EU countries to have adopted national mandatory gender quotas for listed companies.

The other seven are Belgium, France, Italy, Germany, Austria, Portugal and the Netherlands.

Ten have taken a softer approach, using a range of measures and initiatives: Denmark, Estonia, Ireland, Spain, Luxembourg, Poland, Romania, Slovenia, Finland and Sweden.

Cyprus and eight other countries (Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Croatia, Latvia, Lithuania, Hungary, Malta and Slovakia) have not taken substantial action. [Reuters]