DUBAI, 18th February, 2020 (WAM) A successful initiative to enhance women’s representation in governing boards has inspired the Dubai Women’s Establishment to launch a ‘Guide for Women on Boards’, according to a top official.
“This [guide] will help women board members and women aspirants in the UAE and across the world,” Shamsa Saleh, CEO of the Dubai Women Establishment, told Emirates News Agency, WAM, on the sidelines of the Global Women’s Forum in Dubai.
The guide launched at the Forum on Monday details how women can get more involved in boardrooms; it gives the know-how for women, she explained.
This new initiative, in collaboration with the Securities and Commodities Authority, SCA, will further support the DWE’s ambitious initiative named ‘Women on Boards’,” Saleh said.
The ‘Women on Boards’ launched by DWE in 2012, under the directives of H.H. Sheikha Manal bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, President of the UAE Gender Balance Council and President of the DWE, aims to increase the representation of women on boards of directors in local entities across the public and private sectors to 20 percent by 2020.
The initiative led to the UAE Cabinet decision in 2012, which made female representation on the boards of directors of all corporations and government entities mandatory.
Emirati women’s representation on the boards of Dubai government authorities reached 16.1 percent in 2016, and reached 17 percent on the boards of federal entities in June of 2018, the official said.
Emirati women’s representation on the boards of Dubai Financial Market’s listed public shareholding companies increased from 1.2 percent to five percent during the past two years, she said.
Twenty-three thousand Emirati businesswomen run projects worth over AED50 billion, and occupy 15 percent of the positions in the boards of chambers of commerce and industry nationwide, Saleh noted.
The newly launched guide will further enhance women’s representation in boardrooms, because it will equip women to take up such leadership roles, the CEO explained.
The UAE has jumped 23 positions to 26th in the United Nations Development Programme’s Gender Inequality Index in 2019, making it the highest ranked Arab country in the world, she pointed out.
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, when establishing the UAE Gender Balance Council in 2015, set a goal to place the UAE among the world’s top 25 countries in the field of gender balance by 2021, Saleh noted.
“Now we are just one rank closer to that goal. Next year we are expecting to jump more ranks in the UNDP report,” the CEO said.