Dec 01, 2023 / Fundación CEOE


If the gender gap in SMEs and self-employed workers was eliminated, Andalusia's GDP would be 7% higher, which is equivalent to €11 billion more in regional wealth.

Seville, November 30, 2023.- Seville’s Chamber of Commerce and the ClosinGap Association, in collaboration with Spain’s Chamber and the CEOE Foundation, held an informative conference on “The impact of equality on business growth”.

The event was attended by Fátima Bañez, President of the CEOE Foundation; José Luis Sanz, Mayor of Seville; Francisco Herrero, President of the Chamber of Commerce of Seville; Ángel Sánchez, General Coordinator of the CEOE Foundation, and representatives of companies and associations led by women.

The conference analysed the tools for boosting equality and promoting female talent and discussed business management issues from the perspective of female leadership.

During his speech, the president of Seville’s Chamber of Commerce, Francisco Herrero, highlighted the commitment of this Chamber to make companies aware of the importance of implementing equality plans in their organisations. “For years, the Chamber has been working on raising awareness among the business and labour ecosystem about the importance of consolidating equal opportunity policies for women and men in the workforce, as well as achieving a balanced representation in the different decision-making bodies and levels. In fact, our corporation and its subsidiary companies (EUSA, Nuevas Profesiones and CEFNA) already have an Equality Plan for the workforce.”

“Following this premise and on the basis of an agreement signed with the Seville City Council, we have organised awareness-raising and advisory workshops in which more than 170 companies and public and private institutions have participated, and we have been able to advise them on the existing support and management tools that enable the development of equality plans in their work environments. To this end, the GARANTÍA CÁMARA project supports companies in the implementation of their equality plans through the “AL-Igualdad” Certification, which provides transparency and credibility to the practices developed in terms of equal opportunities for women and men”, explained Herrero.

In turn, the president of the CEOE Foundation, Fátima Báñez, stressed that “Spain’s agenda is the agenda of talent in all its diversity, and excellence lies in diversity. ClosinGap highlights what our country would be like with full equality in society, valuing the importance of the full incorporation of women into the labour market, and collaborating with public administrations to increase efficiency. That is why our work relies on rigorous data analysis, proposing solutions to build a better country together.

Báñez also stressed that “the majority of the productive fabric is made up of SMEs and self-employed workers, they account for 99% of our productive fabric. If we had real equality in SMEs and among the self-employed today, Andalusia’s wealth would be 7% higher, which is equivalent to €11 billion more wealth in the region. We would be talking about 350,000 more Andalusian women working, 150,000 self-employed, and 30,000 new SMEs in Andalusia. Therefore, equal opportunities translate into a better Andalusia with more talent. The data tell us that the goal must be growth that turns into opportunities and employment for all, as a tool that allows people to pursue their life projects with freedom and independence”.

Finally, the Mayor of Seville, José Luis Sanz, explained that “as a local government, one of our priorities is to make Seville an attractive destination for economic investment that will allow our city to grow. Although we already have a strategy to achieve this, we cannot do it alone. That is why the Chamber of Commerce’s work in this issue is essential.”

“And, needless to say, achieving real and effective equality in all areas of society, including in business, is a goal that, as public servants, we must all aspire to achieve sooner rather than later”.

Fundación CEOE
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