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More women executives in PH, Asia Pacific, but…

/ 02:16 PM March 10, 2017

The proportion of senior business roles held by women in Asia Pacific (APAC) has risen from 23 percent last year to 25 percent this year, a global survey conducted by an audit firm showed on Wednesday.

The Grant Thornton’s International Business Report (IBR), an annual global business survey of 5,500 businesses in 36 economies showed that the proportion of women in senior roles in emerging APAC countries improved.

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According to the study, women in senior roles in the Philippines, India and Indonesia have risen from 26 to 29 percent. Meanwhile, for developed countries from the region, such as Japan and Australia, the figures stayed at 13 percent.

Forty percent of female executives from the Philippines hold senior business roles in 2017, which is one point higher than last year’s. The survey showed that 21 percent of businesses have women CEOs (chief executive officers) while 14 percent have women COOs (chief operating officers).

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Joining the Philippines in having more women in senior management posts are Indonesia (from 36 percent last year to 46 percent this year), Singapore (from 26 to 30 percent), and mainland China (from 30 percent to 31 percent).

However, the report also revealed that the percentage of businesses with no women in senior management has risen from 31 percent last year to 35 percent this year.

“This year businesses across APAC have increased the proportion of senior roles held by women. However, we are still only halfway there, and with the percentage of businesses with no women in senior management also rising it feels as if we’re taking one step forward and one step back,” Marivic Españo, Chairperson & CEO at P&A Grant Thornton, said in a statement.

“This is a real concern for business growth as it suggests we aren’t maximizing the potential out there,” she added.

The report also noted that globally, developed economies, like those in the G7, are lagging behind.

“The data for major economies is discouraging. The reasons for this lack of progress are many and varied, and they depend on the culture of individual businesses and the broader culture of the country or region in which they sit,” Españo said.

“However, this year we encountered a concerning sense that the issue has plateaued, as companies perhaps assume the diversity challenge has been dealt with. The evidence tells us this is not the case,” she added.

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She also said that companies today need to be more productive, more innovative and in many ways more open if they are to grow, adding that diversity will be the key to their success.

“Those that remain closed are putting themselves at risk of not tapping in to their full potential, and losing access to diversity of thinking,” she added. IDL

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TAGS: Diversity, female business executives, Grant Thornton, International Business Report, lady boss, women CEO
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