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China Faces Widening Gender Income Gap
Source:Chinese Women's Research Network | Release Date:2012-4-6-
Title: China Faces Widening Gender Income Gap
Release Date: April 5, 2012
Keyword: gender, income gap, widening

Chinese women's average income levels have dropped dramatically in comparison with that of men during the past two decades, according to Country Program Manager of UN Women China Julie Broussard. She made the statement during her speech at the Women's Leadership Forum held at the Shanghai-based China Europe International Business School on March 28, 2012.

According to Broussard, Chinese urban and rural women's income was 77% and 79% of men's in 1990 while the figures have dropped to 67.3% and 56% respectively.

Broussard has posited that although women have become more willing to break traditional family norms and go out to work, they still face obstacles in employment. Statistics show that only one out of 120 state-owned enterprises has a female leader in charge, reflecting that Chinese women are still having trouble breaking the glass ceiling in employment.

China Europe International Business School professor Li Xiujuan has said that the percentage of gainfully employed Chinese women is 70%, which is the highest in the world. There are 29 million Chinese women entrepreneurs.

However, according to Li, the percentage of women senior management personnel is still lower than 20%, although women's education levels have improved in recent years. Li thinks that this can be attributed to gender discrimination and women's attitudes towards employment. Many women still impose a glass ceiling on their own achievements and are unable to recognize the skills they have which can help them develop their careers.

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