Insights Blog

The Council of the EU has agreed a “general approach” on a directive, initially proposed by the EU Commission in 2012,  aiming to improve the gender balance among non-executive directors of EU listed companies.

Under today’s agreed approach, companies would have to take steps to reach a minimum target of having 40% of non-executive director positions held by members of the under-represented sex, or 33% if all board members are included.  Companies that fail to reach these targets would have to apply clear, unambiguous and neutrally formulated criteria when appointing or electing directors.

The next step as part of the EU legislative process will be negotiations between the Council and the European Parliament with a view to agreeing a common position on the proposed directive.

Today’s agreement in the Council is an important step forward. I call for a swift start to negotiations with the European Parliament with a view to the final adoption of this directive, which will help to address the glass ceiling with which women are still too often faced in the world of work.

Élisabeth Borne, French Minister for Labour, Employment and Economic Inclusion