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Only 13 Of 105 Directors Women: Stock Exchange

Only 13 Of 105 Directors Women: Stock Exchange
(from left): Fiji TV chief executive officer Karen Lobendahn, South Pacifc Stock Exchange chief exectuive officer Krishika Narayan, Gul Fatima, Fiji Sports Council chief executive officer Litiana Loabuka, Waisale Iowane, Glenis Yee, SPSE chairperson Nur Bano Ali and Sujatha Nair. Photo: Sheldon Chanel
March 09
11:00 2018

Only 13 of the 105 directors from the 19 South Pacific Stock Exchange listed companies are women, chief executive officer Krishika Narayan revealed yesterday.

The stock exchange marked International Woman’s Day with a debate in Suva to discuss female representation on listed company boards.

Stock Exchange Chairperson Nur Bano Ali called the figure “biased and awkwardly embarrassing,” saying action needed to be taken immediately.

“To the women, I say: you are very good so put your hand up and take the chance,” Dr Ali said.

While Ms Narayan admitted that more needed to done, she expressed confidence that greater gender diversity in the corporate arena could be achieved.

“The work has well and truly begun in the quest for gender equality,” Ms Narayan added.

The SPSE, also as part of the celebrations, rang its opening trading bell in a bid to raise awareness for gender equality in business,

The new Australian High Commissioner to Fiji John Feakes was also in attendance, alongside his counterpart from New Zealand Jonathan Curr.

The Ring the Bell for Gender Equality event was part of a global awareness-raising initiative.

It was in partnership with the United Nations Global Compact, UN Women, the Sustainable Stock Exchanges Initiative, International Finance Corporation and the World Federation of Exchanges and Women in Exchange-Traded Funds.

Ms Narayan said: “The aim for such an event is to re-emphasise the importance of women’s economic empowerment to business growth and development

“And (to also) highlight the role private sector can play in creating opportunities and prospects for women in the business arena as well as communities.”

Two teams of three debated the topic: “should SPSE mandate listed companies to have women representation on its board through the SPSE listing rules (Yes or No)?”

Debate teams comprised of representatives from listed companies and other private sector stakeholders.

The team arguing for the topic, comprising of Gul Fatima, Glenis Yee and Waisale Iowane, received an overwhelming number of votes to win the contest.

They argued that the mindset of people not wanting to hire females in leading positions had to be defeated.




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