Women to the fore

Bank governor calls for greater effort

FIJI’s central bank wants to see more women on the boards of companies listed on the South Pacific Stock Exchange. Reserve Bank of Fiji Governor, Barry Whiteside, said there was a need for women of merit on these boards. Whiteside, who is also chairman of the Capital Market Advisory and Development Taskforce, said that there was a general consensus that gender diversity based on merit needed to be seriously considered at the board or top management level.

The notion of gender diversity on boards of listed companies had become an integral indicator of corporate governance, he said. Women hold less than 10 per cent of board positions and approximately 60 per cent of the companies listed on the SPSE do not have a single woman as part of their boards. “It is time that companies took action to break this glass ceiling and take advantage of this untapped pool of qualified board candidates,” Whiteside said. “These statistics also highlight the need for talent development and investment in leadership taking into consideration gender diversity.”

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