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WTW study highlights gender wealth equity gap in UAE

WTW study highlights gender wealth equity gap in UAE

 November 21, 2022

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A WTW study has shown that UAE women retire with just 69 per cent of wealth earned by men.

According to WTW: "Our global gender wealth equity study showed that, in the #UAE, women retire with just 69% of the wealth earned by men. Good progress has been made in the UAE, but more can be done to change this."

Breaking it down into roles, the Emrati Times highlighted that the study shows that the gap in wealth is much higher for women in more senior jobs. In the UAE, women in senior leadership roles have only 57 per cent of the accumulated wealth that their male counterparts enjoy upon retiring, greater than the global average gap of 62 per cent.

A significant gap for mid-level professional and technical roles

The gap is still significant for mid-level professional and technical roles in the UAE at 61 per cent but closes to 92 per cent for frontline operational roles. Globally, those figures are 69 per cent and 89 per cent respectively.

Commenting on the study, WTW UAE Director, Lea Farhat, highlighted that, “This inequality is found across the world, and is caused by a complex mix of factors, including the salary gap between men and women, delayed careers for women due to family care, and gaps in financial literacy. Many societies, including the UAE, are seeing a welcome debate about pay equality. But that is not the only factor, and we should broaden the scope of the discussion to include women’s wealth at retirement.”

“The UAE government takes this issue seriously and has made some welcome reforms to narrow the gender gap, including a law on equal pay for equal work. However, there is still more to be done to improve the whole ecosystem, and that could include adequate paid maternity leave, supporting mothers returning to work, caregiving options, and working hours flexibility. One encouraging aspect is that the UAE’s gap is partly explained because proportionately more Emirati females have reached more senior roles than in many other countries," she commented.

Gender diversity, equity and inclusion needs to broaden

Looking at other geographical locations, the report shows that Nigeria has the worst overall gender wealth gap score in the study at 60 per cent, followed by Argentina at 61 per cent. On the other hand, Spain has a gap of 86 per cent and South Korea 90 per cent, while the wealth gap in the United States was reported at 75 per cent.

"The results from our global analysis are startling. It shows that there is a gender wealth gap consistently across the 39 countries that we studied. It’s imperative that activities around gender diversity, equity and inclusion broaden to look at economic wealth at the end of women’s working careers. Pay is a fundamental factor that underlies the gender wealth gap and while addressing the gender pay gap will partially close the wealth gap, it won’t eliminate it entirely," says WTW Senior Director, Integrated & Global Solutions, Manjit Basi.

Read the article in full  here

Or access the report here.

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