Ramaphosa praises mandatory reporting of pay discrepancies in Swiss speech

President Cyril Ramaphosa has praised the concept of mandatory reporting of pay discrepancies in the workplace.

Ramaphosa was speaking at the launch of the Global Commission of the Future of Work Report in Geneva, Switzerland. He is co-chair of the commission, together with Stefan Löfven, the prime minister of Sweden.

Ramaphosa attended the event before heading to the annual WEF in Davos, where he is looking to drum up foreign direct investment with a high-profile team including Finance Minister Tito Mboweni and Reserve Bank governor Lesetja Kganyago.

In his speech, the president said it was high time to move beyond rhetoric when it comes to gender equality in the workplace. This could include policies like the mandatory reporting of pay discrepancies.

Other recommendations include:

  • proper accounting for unpaid care work;
  • greater representation of women in employers’ and workers’ organisations;
  • specific measures to ensure equal opportunities in the technology-enabled jobs of the future; and
  • the elimination of violence and harassment in the workplace.

While South Africa does not have mandatory polices around the reporting of pay differentials between women and men in the workplace, data points towards wide gaps. 

A 2018 report commissioned by PwC found that in SA 61% of women were remunerated below the median of the sample, compared to just 39% of men. In addition, only 2.2% of the CEOs at JSE-listed companies were women. This increased to 10% when considering CEOs of all SA companies, not just those which were listed.

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