Taiwan News
Taiwan's gender pay gap improves slightly this year
By Zoe Wei and Kuo Chung-han
Feb. 26, 2015

Taiwan's Ministry of Labor on Thursday set this year's Equal Pay Day on Feb. 24, based on estimates that Taiwanese women needed to work that far into this year to earn the same amount that men did last year.

Taiwan's Equal Pay Day is derived from the estimate that women here on average have to work 55 more days than men at their current pay rate to make the same amount because their salary is 15 percent less than that of their male coworkers.

This year's figure is better than last year's, which came four days later on Feb. 28 (amounting to 59 extra work days for women). The Equal Pay Day of 2013 was worse, falling on March 2.

Equal Pay Day is a symbolic day that illustrates how far into the year a woman must work to earn the same amount made by a man in the previous year.

It can be different for every country. Each country may designate its own Equal Pay Day, which can fall on different days of the year, depending on how many more days it takes working women in their country to earn the same salary as their male counterparts.

The concept was established in 1996 by the National Committee on Pay Equity (NCPE) in the United States. It's aimed at raising public awareness about the gap between men's and women's wages.

Compared to the United States, Taiwan's gender wage gap of 15 percent remains smaller than the United States' 17.5 percent. The next Equal Pay Day in the United States is April 14, 2015.

Taiwan's wage gap between men and women is also better than that of Japan's 33.5 percent and Korea's 30.8 percent (last year).

While calling for efforts to close the gap further, Taiwan's Labor Ministry said the numbers indicate the salary disparity in the workplace in Taiwan has improved since 2003, when the gender pay gap was at 20.1 percent.
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