Korea’s gender-wage gap widest

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Korea’s gender-wage gap widest

The wage gap between Korean male and female workers is the highest among key industrialized economies, a report by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development showed yesterday.

The report, released to mark this year’s International Women’s Day, revealed that of the 21 OECD countries checked, South Korea had the widest disparity between genders.

The report was based on reference data collected from the 21 countries compiled from 2003 through 2006, with OECD members such as Turkey, Mexico, Iceland and the Slovak Republic not being tallied.

According to the findings, women employed as regular workers received on average 38 percent less than their male counterparts. This is far higher than the average for the OECD members checked that stood at 17.6 percent.

Japan came in second in terms of wage disparity, with women making 33.0 percent less than men, followed by Germany, Canada and Britain.

The difference in Germany stood at 23.0 percent, while that for Canada and Britain reached 21.0 percent each.

For the United States, the average wage gap was 19.0 percent, with Belgium having the least disparity with a male employee making 9.3 percent more than a female.

“The disparity in wages reflects the male-oriented nature of the country’s workplace, but there have been steady gains to reduce the gap,” a Ministry of Strategy and Finance official said.

He added that more up-to-date data showed that the wage gap between men and women workers has decreased since 2006 as women make inroads into higher managerial and executive level posts.

The Paris-based OECD is made up of 30 members, with South Korea having joined the organization in 1996.

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