UAE Gender Balance chief hails move to appoint more women to the board

Sheikha Manal says move is ‘vital step towards further empowering women’ in line with international best practices

The UAE has become the first in the region to issue binding legislation mandating women’s representation on the boards of government institutions.

Sheikha Manal bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, president of the UAE Gender Balance Council, on Monday commended the UAE Securities and Commodities Authority’s decision to make representation of women on boards of directors of listed companies mandatory.

Sheikha Manal, also president of Dubai Women Establishment and wife of His Highness Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, said the decision is a “vital step towards further empowering women in line with international best practices”.

The UAE, home to Dubai and Abu Dhabi stock markets, will require at least one female director on the boards of all listed companies, as firms around the world face pressure to boost gender diversity.

She said the move can bring about “wide-ranging positive benefits including enhanced performance of boards and companies, greater national economic growth and increased socio-economic participation of women”.

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