Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said the same initiative implemented in several countries including the United Kingdom was seen as successful in placing capable women in top positions in organisations.
“In this matter, I understand that the Women, Family and Community Development Ministry and PEMANDU (Performance Management Delivery Unit) are studying the possibility of Malaysia to have such a club using its own mechanism and mould.”
Muhyiddin said this in his speech when opening the Women’s Summit 2014 organised by the ministry, in the capital, Monday.
Also present were his wife Puan Sri Noorainee Abdul Rahman, Women, Family and Community Development Minister Datuk Seri Rohani Abdul Karim and her deputy Datuk Azizah Mohd Dun.
Muhyiddin said the government had high hopes in the private sector to push women’s leadership to the fore for diversity and gender equality.
“In this matter, the government had in 2011 announced its policy of having 30 per cent women’s participation at the decision-making level in the corporate sector,” he said.
He referred to the Manpower Investigative Report 2013 of the Malaysia Statistics Department which stated that 78.6 per cent of working women in this country were employed in the private sector.
He said to achieve the 30 per cent target, the government had drawn up a policy and provided incentives for the private sector to encourage more women to join the workforce and to ensure they remain in employment and capable of filling up the high posts.
Muhyiddin said in the public sector, there were also women leaders who were capable of bringing changes towards achieving gender equality.
He said the number of women holding high positions in the public sector was expected to continue to grow through the efforts of the Public Service Department in fasting-tracking the career upward mobility of women officers with high potential in the management and professional group.
The deputy prime minister said that in 2013, 205,557 or 62 per cent of public officers at the management and professional level were women.
Therefore, he hoped that all the high-level women officers in the public sector would serve as role models and an inspiration for other women officers to raise their capability and achievements for them to qualify to enter the “fast track”.
Muhyiddin said the government, meanwhile, had also implemented various strategies to provide entrepreneurial opportunities for women, such as the easy loan scheme for women operating small and medium enterprises.
On the Women’s Summit themed ‘Trailblaze to the Top’, he said it emphasised on leadership qualities in helping to develop other individuals towards success.
“This does not only refer to leadership in a formal organisation but also in various contexts of life, and the main factor determining success for every woman is one’s improved knowledge and skills in keeping with the changing times,” he added.
The one-day summit attracted about 1,050 participants who had, among others, the opportunity to listen to the experiences of the local and international speakers in achieving success.