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China records second highest percentage of women CEOs

About 19 per cent of Chinese women in management positions hold the post of chief executive officer (CEO), the second highest percentage recorded among 39 countries and regions, a report from a leading accounting firm has revealed.

world Updated: Mar 08, 2011 12:59 IST

About 19 per cent of Chinese women in management positions hold the post of chief executive officer (CEO), the second highest percentage recorded among 39 countries and regions, a report from a leading accounting firm has revealed.

The result for China is much higher than the average figure for the world, which is eight percent, according to the Grant Thornton International Business Report 2011, the China Daily reported Tuesday.

According to the report released Monday, the Asia Pacific region, excluding Japan, is home to a much higher percentage of female CEOs than are Europe and the US.

Thailand, where 30 per cent of companies employ female CEOs, is on the top. The number for EU countries is nine percent and for North American countries five percent.

"Chinese women are just as capable of being business leaders as men," said Guan Liming, senior partner of Grant Thornton Jingdu Tianhua. "In some ways, they outperform male leaders in fields such as team work, communication and coping with different tasks simultaneously."

Women now hold 34 percent of the senior management positions in China, a number that has risen from the 31 per cent reported for 2009.

The report shows that across the world women now hold 20 per cent of the senior management positions, down from 24 percent in 2009.

The countries with the lowest percentages are the United Arab Emirates and Japan, where women hold eight percent of senior management positions.

"With China becoming an economic powerhouse, its society offers more opportunities for women's development," said Xu Hua, chairman of Grant Thornton Jingdu Tianhua.

Grant Thornton International is a London-based global organisation of accounting and consulting member firms which provide assurance, tax and specialist advisory services to privately held businesses and public interest entities.

Another study suggests that Chinese women are more ambitious than their counterparts in other countries. According to a research conducted by Newsweek magazine, 75 percent of Chinese career women aim to have positions in senior management, while the figure is 50 per cent for the US.