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9 July 2012
In a written submission to the House of Lords, IMA says what investors want is an effective board that is the best fit for the company. Whilst quotas offer a quick fix to get women on boards they do not necessarily achieve a sustainable change.
One year after Lord Davies' Review it is clear that the voluntary approach is working and there are an increasing number of women on boards. From 1st October 2012 listed companies will have to report annually on their policy on board diversity and the progress made. This will make a company's commitment to diversity clear. The European Commission should re-assess the success of such voluntary measures in 3-5 years before considering quotas.
Liz Murrall, IMA Director of Corporate Governance and Reporting said:
“Diversity is needed and that is precisely why we oppose legislation. Different companies need different boards; you cannot prescribe the best fit. Boards need a mix of skills, experience, nationalities and gender.
“Voluntary measures are working and we are confident that Lord Davies' target of 25% female representation on FTSE 100 boards by 2015 will be met as a result of the steps taken and now being taken.”
House of Lords European Union Sub-Committee B: Call for Evidence on Gender Balance in the Boardroom. See our response.