NSW introduces targets to get more women in government boardrooms

By Melissa Coade

April 19, 2022

Matt Kean
NSW treasurer Matt Kean. (AAP Image/Joel Carrett)

The NSW government has announced that 81 board positions for its State Owned Corporations (SOC) and Public Financial Corporations (PFC) will be subject to new gender targets.

Women currently make up 40% of the SOC and PFC board positions but according to the state government, that number can better reflect society. 

NSW treasurer Matt Kean said on Monday the government would introduce new targets for the two boards so that no less than 40% of board director positions would be filled by women, and 50% women for all board positions overall.

The targets aim to deliver by the end of 2022 for SOCs and ‘as soon as practicable’ for PFCs.

“Greater gender diversity in our boardrooms will positively impact the decisions and direction of our businesses,” Kean said in a statement.  

“It is important our government businesses lead the way in providing women with equal employment opportunities.”

Treasury will publish annual data on its board targets online, with appointments to SOCs and PFCs published on its website

Guaranteeing equal access to leadership opportunities for women with targets would also give some of the state’s leading talent more of a chance to make an impact across industries, the treasurer added.

“Highly credentialled women across NSW will bring their talent and expertise to these boards to provide insights and make decisions that reflect the broader gender mix of NSW,” he said.

Minister for women Bronnie Taylor said more women represented on these boards would lead to better outcomes for women in society. 

“NSW’s State Owned Corporations stretch across the energy, water, ports, transport and forestry sectors and these targets will see more diverse views represented,” Taylor said. 

“Increasing the number of women on our Public Financial Corporation boards will bring a greater range of perspectives to insurance, lending and investment management, ultimately helping women gain greater financial independence and security,” she said. 

The NSW government is also focusing on increasing women’s participation in the workforce with a Women’s Economic Opportunities Review and Expert Reference Panel currently underway.


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