Swedish plan for quota on women on boards defeated

The Swedish government’s plan to introduce legislation to make listed companies increase the number of women in their boardrooms has been rejected by the opposition.

The legislation called for at least 40 percent of board members of listed firms to be women by 2019.

The government had promised a bill if companies did not reach the 40 percent target by the time of their 2016 board meetings.

Women make up 32 percent of the boards of Swedish listed companies. Nearby Norway was the first country to impose gender quotas in 2003 – it called for 40 percent representation on the boards of leading companies.

Similar laws have been or are being introduced in France, Germany and the Netherlands.

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