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Women In 38.8% Of Top Management Roles In Malaysian Public Service Sector

21% of PLCs have at least 30% of women on their board of directors, while 24% of GLCs have at least 30% on their board of directors.

Photo caption: Businesswoman sitting in a boardroom. Photo by Enhialus from Pixabay

KUALA LUMPUR, July 4 – According to the Public Service Department (JPA) statistics, women make up 38.8 per cent of the highest management level in the public service sector, as of December 2022.   

Out of 979 public listed companies (PLCs), 204 (21 per cent) have at least 30 per cent of women on their board of directors, while 24 per cent of government-linked companies (GLCs) have at least 30 per cent of women at the same level, as of December 2022. 

Meanwhile, the number of women in top management or C-suite roles, including chief executive officer (CEO), chief financial officer (CFO), chief technical officer (CTO), chief operating officer (COO), and chief information officer (CIO) in PLCs and GLCs have exceeded the target of at least 30 per cent. 

These statistics were provided in the Ministry of Women, Family and Community Development’s (KPWKM) response to a question by Senator Koh Nai Kwong in the Dewan Negara last June 19.

Koh wanted to know what plans the ministry had to empower women in policy and decision-making roles, including in the GLC and public services sector.

“Although the percentage of women on the board of directors of the Top 100 PLCs have not yet reached at least 30 per cent, there is significant improvement,” said KPWKM minister Nancy Shukri in her written reply.

“For example, statistics from 2016 show that only 14 per cent of PLCs surpassed this target. However, based on the Securities Commission (SC) report dated April 1, 2023, this number has increased to 29.7 per cent, which is only two seats away from achieving the 30 per cent target.”

The minister added that this was due to the SC’s initiative to improve the Malaysian Code on Corporate Governance (MCCG) in 2021 by making it mandatory for all PLCs to appoint at least one woman to its board of directors.

“This initiative was enforced on September 1, 2022 for all large capital companies and on June 1, 2023 for all other PLCs.”

Through its Department of Women Development (JPW), KPWKM has organised gender empowerment and professional women’s leadership programmes throughout the country, said Nancy, adding that her ministry also works with universities, NGOs, and the private sector to organise training programmes that empower women with the skills and resilience to compete in the formal employment market. 

“Malaysia’s effort and initiative to achieve at least 30 per cent of women representation has also been recognised globally when the Malaysian delegation represented by KPWKM was awarded the Ministerial Award through our presentation entitled Women Empowerment: At Least 30 per cent of Women in Decision Making Position at the 2023 Global Summit of Women in Dubai, United Arab Emirates earlier this month,” Nancy said.

“The presentation shared our efforts to develop legislation and policies, as well as create an ecosystem that supports the implementation of our initiatives in this country.”

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