Paying less to women may limit contracts with the State

  • ECO News
  • 17 April 2017

The measure should be completed by the first of March, to later be presented to the social concertation.

The Portuguese Government is preparing a law which will punish companies who do not comply with gender equality of pay criteria when at issue are the same job tasks.

The law, which should be ready in the beginning of May, predicts the possibility of disallowing or limiting non-compliant companies’ access to contracts with the State — contracts concerning public works awards, applying to structural funds, or internships subsidies, discloses this Monday the Portuguese newspaper Público.

Financial fines are not foreseen, in order not to “harm companies in their development stage” nor to “instigate the perverse effect of having companies avoid employing women”, discloses a source heard by the newspaper.

In addition to that penalty, the law aims to create reference criteria and supervision mechanisms, namely from the State. Companies will have to present data on the gender pay gap, stating the average amounts being paid.

The goal is to have the measure completed by the first of March, to later be presented to social partners within the Agenda for Gender Equality in the Labor Market and in Companies.

In 2015, the wage gap between genders was 17.8%, according to Eurostat’s data quoted by Público.