- The Straits Times
Despite being counted among the world’s best nations for gender equality, women in Singapore are still being paid 20 per cent less than men, according to a study published on Thursday (Jan 20) by Australia-based finance site Finder.
The study ranked 15 countries worldwide “commonly cited” on Google as having great gender equality – on 10 metrics, like the gender wage gap, women’s retirement savings, and female board representation.
Singapore came in last overall, while Finder said the title of “best country for working women” went to Denmark.
Finder said it used data from a “range of different government, private industry and prominent media sites”, including the World Bank, OECD, and for Singapore – the Ministry of Manpower.
The company added that since Singapore lacked data for two of the metrics (‘job security’ and ‘extra household hours compared to men’), it took the best eight metrics for each country to form their final score.
Singapore came in last on three metrics: annual holidays (17 days), average working hours (45 hours) and the gender pay gap (20 per cent), which Finder said was the biggest gender wage gap among the oft-called “gender-equal” nations.
In addition, it ranked among the bottom three positions for percentage of women filling board positions and the cost of living.
“While Singapore has a lot to offer working women, when compared to other top countries, Singapore performs poorly,” the report said.
Singaporean women also had 17 per cent less retirement savings than men, the report said – but it added that this figure was considered good compared to the 50 per cent gender retirement savings gap in the US.