The German government wants more women on company boards in the country – and on Wednesday signed off on plans to introduce a gender quota to achieve that goal.
Under the legislation, listed companies with more than three executives on their boards must have at least one female boss at that top level.
The rule will be even stricter for companies in which the federal government holds a majority stake.
Here, the rule is to have a woman on the board even if it is made up of just three people.
In addition, companies will have to provide specific reasons if they plan to have no women on their executive board, the two top management levels below the executive board and the supervisory board, and sanctions for violating reporting requirements are to become stricter.
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According to a study conducted by the Fidar think tank, which campaigns for better female representation in top management, 44 per cent of listed companies affected by the new quota currently do not have a single woman in their upper echelons.
Supervisory boards are already subject to a quota in Germany.
Companies of a certain size, generally with a workforce of more than 2,000, must have women in 30 per cent of the positions on their supervisory boards.
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