By Staff Reporter
Nine companies were on Tuesday awarded certificates for best practices and for gender equality in the workplace by the labour ministry.
It was the first-ever such award ceremony titled the ‘Cyprus Certification Business Model’.
In dishing out the awards, Labour Minister Zeta Emilianidou said the companies had shown that they were not stereotypical in that they did not believe the skills of their employees were linked to their gender “pointing the way towards eliminating discrimination between men and women”.
The creation of the Cyprus Certification Business Model is part of a project on reducing the remuneration gap between men and women, which is run by the labour ministry and financed by the European Social Fund .
It aims to award businesses which implement policies equal opportunities and consists of 14 different criteria that include possibilities for advancement within a company, equal pay and a good work-life balance.
Under the Cyprus Certification Model, companies have the right to apply for two types of certification; an integrated system to promote gender equality in the workplace to receive the certification ‘Employer Equality’, or they can apply for a ‘Best Practices’ certificate.
The companies approved for ‘Employer Equality’ certification were: Deloitte, KPMG and PricewaterhouseCoopers Cyprus .
The remainder who received ‘Best Practices’ certificates were; the University of Nicosia, Vassiliko Cement Works Public Company, Consulco Limited, Corina Snacks-Pepsico, Cyprus Trading Corporation, and Ernst & Young.
According to latest statistics, men in Cyprus earn 16.4 per cent more than women, ranking Cyprus among 10 EU member states with the largest gap in salaries between the two sexes.
A survey conducted by the University of Nicosia found that women were concentrated in traditionally low-pay professions in sectors like tourism, nursing, and education.
There were more men in business administration, engineering, and technology. Only 8.4 per cent of management positions in Cyprus were held by women.