Statistics as at Dec 2020

News Release

Progress seen in women’s participation on boards of people, private and public sector organisations : Council for Board Diversity

  • Statutory boards1 showed the most progress among the people, private and public sectors, achieving 27.5% women’s participation on boards as at 31 December 2020.
  • The 100 largest primary-listed companies on Singapore Exchange (“SGX”)2 achieved 17.6% WOB, and the top 100 Institutions of a Public Character3 (“IPCs”) achieved 28.8% WOB.
  • All three sectors showed an increase in the number of boards that have achieved 30% or more WOB although all have yet to reach the targets set by CBD in 2019.
  • Companies have the lowest proportion of women board chairs compared to Statutory Boards and IPCs.
  • All organisations encouraged to appoint qualified candidates with relevant experience but first-time on boards, in their move for diversity.

PDF version here

Singapore: 12 April 2021 – Singapore’s Council for Board Diversity (“CBD”) announced that women’s participation on boards (“WOB”) of people, private and public sector organisations have increased in 2020.

Statutory boards1 improved most, with an increase of 2.4 percentage points from end 2019 to 27.5% WOB in end 2020. The largest 100 primary-listed companies on SGX2 (“Top 100 companies”) achieved 17.6% WOB at end 2020, improving by 1.4 percentage points from the previous year. Top 100 IPCs3 with 28.8% WOB at end 2020, improved 1 percentage point from end 2019.

All three sectors experienced an increase in the number of boards that achieved 30% or more WOB. About a third of statutory boards and close to half of Top 100 IPCs have 30% or more WOB. 16 Top 100 companies have 30% or more WOB, with four joining the ranks in 2020 – Singapore Press Holdings, SPH REIT, and Venture Corporation each appointed one more woman onto their board; Nanofilm Technologies International listed in 2020 with 33% WOB.

Notwithstanding the progress made last year, all three sectors have yet to reach the aspirational targets set by CBD in 20194. Feedback received by CBD indicated that some companies did not view board diversity as a priority as they battled the pandemic in 2020. CBD observed that the phenomenon of slower rate of women director appointment appeared to be a local issue, as large companies in Australia and the UK quickened the pace of appointment in 2020.

Mr Loh Boon Chye, Co-Chair, CBD and CEO, Singapore Exchange, said, “Board diversity, a recognised hallmark of progressive boards even before Covid-19, is more critical now than before. Post-pandemic recovery offers opportunities for innovation and business repositioning. Having directors with a wider mix of gender, age, skills, experiences, and backgrounds allows boards the broad-based choices as they assess what is best for the future.
Investors and customers also now expect companies to go beyond the financial bottom-line and incorporate ESG5 into company strategies and policies. Gender diversity is one of many factors considered in ESG discussions. Women directors are an obvious choice when considering board diversity and we have already started to see some institutional investors vote against boards without sufficient diversity.”

Give equal opportunities to first-time female directors

A common refrain among companies is that many female candidates do not have prior board experience. In view of key shifts in the global environment that requires a broader range of perspectives and experiences to tackle varied issues at the board level, CBD views that a lack of prior board experience should not be a stumbling block to appointing well-qualified candidates with business or specialist experience on the board. What is important is a candidate’s ability to contribute. Data shows that more first-time directors6 are being appointed onto boards of Top 100 companies but they are mostly male. The proportion of first-time directors rose from a third in 2016 to close to half in 2020. However, about 70% of those appointed in 2020 are men.

Mrs Mildred Tan, Co-Chair, CBD and Chairman, Tote Board Singapore, said, “While some boards may be hesitant of appointing candidates without board experience, changes in consumer behaviours and business models in a post-pandemic world requires board members with the “current” relevant know-how. Their expertise could bring added value to boards’ deliberations.
We are glad that 10 companies7 appointed female first-time directors in 2020. We hope that more organisations – including companies and statutory boards – will similarly seek out women talents and give them equal opportunity to take the first step onto a board. When all organisations keep an open mind and appoint such qualified women onto the boards, it expands the pool of candidates for the entire country.”
Mrs Tan added, “Grant Thornton’s recent survey indicated that women make up 33% of senior executives in Singapore, higher than the global average of 31%. Companies that wish to be seen as progressive and relevant to society should consider the signal that they are sending to the public about their stance on women talent and equal opportunities.”

For listed companies, 2021 could be a year with opportunities to appoint more women on boards as the nine-year rule on director independence8 comes into effect on 1 January 2022. The rule does not mandate that the 87 long-serving independent directors (among 43 Top 100 companies) have to step down. It represents an opportunity for companies to reassess the needs of their board in post-pandemic business conditions. Seeking out women candidates with the requisite skills can be part of this process.

CBD plans for 2021 – 2022

CBD will continue its efforts to promote a sustained increase in women’s participation on boards in Singapore by:

  1. Encouraging organisations to adopt best practices in their search and nomination process. This includes widening their search for candidates by engaging executive search firms, defining a broader set of search criteria, assessing the needs of the board as a whole to serve corporate strategy for the immediate and medium term, and consciously requiring a diverse slate of candidates for selection.
  2. Reaching out to Nominating Committee Chairs and members to understand any issues or difficulties, and helping them in their quest for diversity.
  3. Expanding the pipeline of board-ready women by working with various partners and recommending suitable candidates with requisite skills or experience.
  4. Encouraging organisations to redouble efforts to strive for the targets set by CBD in 2019 – for Top 100 companies, this moves to the next-tier targets of 25% by 2025, and 30% by 2030; for statutory boards and Top 100 IPCs, it would be 30% WOB as soon as possible.
  5. Working with partners to raise even more attention to this important topic.

Key highlights of statistics relating to women’s participation on boards (“WOB”), as at 31 December 2020

1. Top 100 listed companies2 :

  1. WOB improved by 1.4 percentage points to 17.6% as at end 2020, from 16.2% as at end 2019. (Annex B, point 1)
  2. There are more boards with 30% or more WOB in 2020 (16%), up from 12% in 2019. Five companies9 joined this group in 2020, while one fell below 30% WOB.
  3. There are 18 all-male boards remaining among Top 100 companies in 2020, compared to 19 in 2019. (Annex B, point 2)
  4. 13 gender-diverse boards appointed more women onto their boards in 2020, an increase from eight in 2019. (Annex B, point 3)
  5. Only seven of the Top 100 companies are chaired by women. (Annex B, point 4)
  6. Women’s proportion of appointments to boards of Top 100 companies reached the highest level since 2013 – women made up 27% of appointments. (Annex B, point 5)
  7. Growing proportion of first-time directors being appointed to boards. Almost half of directors appointed to boards of Top 100 companies in 2020 were first-time directors6, but most were male. (Annex B, point 6)
  8. Improvements were seen across almost all industry-sectors, with most clustered between 11 – 24%. The Top 100 listed companies in the Basic Materials sector have the highest %WOB at 31%. (Annex B, point 8)

2. Statutory Boards1:

  1. Showed the best progress among the three sectors with a 2.4 percentage point increase in WOB to 27.5% as at end 2020, from 25.1% as at end 2019. (Annex C, point 1)
  2. About a third of statutory boards have achieved 30% or more WOB. There is only one all-male board. (Annex C, point 2)
  3. 20% of statutory boards (13 out of 65) are chaired by women. (Annex C, point 3)

3. Top 100 IPCs3:

  1. Remains the sector with the highest WOB at 28.8%, but only improved by 1 percentage point. (Annex D, point 1)
  2. Close to half of Top 100 IPCs have achieved 30% or more WOB. There are three all-male boards. (Annex D, point 2)
  3. Almost 20% of Top 100 IPCs are chaired by women. (Annex D, point 3)

4. More opportunities for greater diversity through board refreshments 

  1. There are 87 independent directorships across 43 Top 100 listed companies that have served on the board for nine years or more. (Annex B, point 7)
[1] Refers to all 65 statutory boards in Singapore.
[2] Refers to top 100 primary-listed companies by market capitalisation on Singapore Exchange (SGX).
[3] Refers to top 100 IPCs by donation receipts in Singapore. IPCs with gender specific objectives resulting in all-women boards are excluded.
[4] CBD set out its long term ambition for equal proportion of men and women directors on boards in 2019. It had also set WOB targets for the intermediate term, which take into consideration the different starting positions of each sector in terms of WOB :
• Top 100 primary-listed companies: 20% WOB by end 2020, 25% by end 2025, 30% by end 2030.
• Top 100 IPCs and statutory boards: 30% WOB as soon as possible.
[5] Environment, social, governance.
[6] First-time directors refer to directors who have not previously served on listed company boards.
[7] See Annex B, Table 3.
[8] The SGX listing rules* (effective 1 Jan 2022) allow a director who has been on the board for more than nine years to be deemed as independent if his/her appointment as an independent director has been sought and approved in separate resolutions by (i) all shareholders; and (ii) all shareholders, excluding shareholders who also serve as the directors or the chief executive officer of the company. Singapore Press Holdings, SPH REIT, and Venture Corporation each appointed an additional woman onto their board in 2020, achieving 30% or more WOB. Nanofilm Technologies International listed in 2020 with 33% WOB. VICOM Limited, which already had 30% WOB previously, became a Top 100 company in 2020.
* Rule 210(5)(d) of the SGX Listing Rules (Mainboard) / Rule 406(3)(d) of the SGX Listing Rules (Catalist)
[9] Singapore Press Holdings, SPH REIT, and Venture Corporation each appointed an additional woman onto their board in 2020, achieving 30% or more WOB. Nanofilm Technologies International listed in 2020 with 33% WOB. VICOM Limited, which already had 30% WOB previously, became a Top 100 company in 2020.

Annex A: Overview of Statistics for Listed Companies, Statutory Boards and Institutions of a Public Character (“IPCs”)

Annex B: Statistics for Listed Companies on SGX, as at 31 December 2020

1. The largest 100 primary-listed companies by market capitalisation (“Top 100 companies”) continued to outpace the market in increasing women’s participation on boards (“WOB”)
  1. The Top 100 companies rose further to achieve 17.6% WOB as at 31 December 2020, from 16.2% in the previous year.
  2. WOB for all SGX-listed companies rose to 12.7% as at end December 2020, from 11.8% as at end December 2019. (Figure 5)

2. More companies with women on boards, leaving fewer all-male boards
  1. Top 100 companies:
    1. The number of companies with 30% or more women on their boards rose to 16 as at end 2020, from 12 in 2019 (Figure 6). Four companies10 joined the ranks in 2020.
    2. 18 all-male boards remain, as at December 2020 (Figure 7). There was a net reduction of only one all-male board, from 19 as at end 2019 to 18 as at end 2020, as a result of :
    Two Top 100 companies adding one female director each (Table 1), -2
    Three all-male boards dropping out of the group of Top 100 companies, and -3
    Four all-male boards joining the group of Top 100 companies. +4

     

  2. All SGX-listed companies: There were more companies with 30% or more WOB, an increase from 8% to 10%. Proportion of all-male boards was stagnant at 47% as at end 2020.



3. 13 gender-diverse companies added more women to their boards, up from eight in 2019

4. Few female Board Chairs on Top 100 companies and all SGX-listed companies
  1. Only seven of the Top 100 companies are chaired by women11. Encouragingly, the percentage of boards chaired by women have been on an upward trend, increasing from 3% to 7% in 2020. (Figure 8)
  2. For all SGX-listed companies, proportion of boards chaired by women ranged between 4% to 6% in the past eight years.

5. Women’s proportion of appointments to boards of Top 100 companies reached the highest level since 2013
  1. Top 100 companies: 27% of board appointments in 2020 were women, compared to 17% in 2019. At the same time, the total number of board appointments in the year has been declining in recent years, after a spike in 2017. (Figure 9)
  2. All SGX-listed companies: Women made up 16% of board appointments in 2020, up from 13% in 2019. There was a steep decline in total number of board appointments from 530 in 2019 to 394 in 2020.

6. More first time directors appointed to boards, but most still men
  1. Similar to the previous year, almost half of directors appointed to boards of Top 100 companies in 2020 were first-time directors12. However, most (73%) were men (Figure 10). 10 out of the 33 Top 100 companies that appointed first-time directors onto their boards added female first-time directors. (Table 3)
  2. For all SGX-listed companies, 53% of directors appointed to boards in 2020 were first-time directors, similar to that in 2019. About 85% were men, similar to 2019 (Figure 10). 26 out of the 146 companies that appointed first-time directors added female first-time directors.

7. Significant number of board renewal opportunities, with the nine-year rule on director independence13 coming into effect on 1 January 2022
  1. 43 of the Top 100 companies have at least one independent director who has served on the board for nine years or more. There are 87 of such directorships as at end 2020. 14 have served for 20 years or more, with the longest tenure at 43 years.
  2. Among all SGX-listed companies, 47% have at least one independent director serving nine years or more. There are 578 of such directorships. 95 have served 20 years or more, with the longest tenure at 49 years.
8. Improvements seen across almost all industry-sectors
  1. WOB clustered between 11-24% for Top 100 companies in 2020. While the Basic Materials sector had the highest percentage of women on boards at 31%, there are only two companies14. The Industrials sector showed the greatest improvement of 26% to reach 24% WOB15.
  2. For all SGX-listed companies, WOB clustered between 11-15%. (Figure 11)

9. International Comparison: Other jurisdictions continued to lengthen their lead

While the Top 100 companies’ improvement in %WOB in 2020 is close to its two preceding years 16, other markets such as the UK and Australia have continued to improve %WOB at an even higher pace than their previous years17.

10. Ranking of Top 100 companies’ women’s participation on boards

Table 4: Top 100 companies’ women’s participation on boards as at 31 December 2020

Rank Company Name TRBC18 sector No. of WOB end 2020 No. board seats end 2020 %WOB end 2020 %WOB end 2019 %WOB end 2018 Women Directors as at end 2020
1 Singapore Post Limited Industrials 4 9 44% 44% 44% Fang Ai Lian, Kong Sau Wai Elizabeth, Lim Cheng Cheng, Chu Swee Yeok
2 Far East Hospitality Trust Real Estate 3 7 43% 33% 20% Vivienne Lim Hui Bian, Catherine Lee Khia Yee, Khoo Geok Choo Celestine
2 SPH REIT Real Estate 3 7 43% 29% 29% Ginney Lim May Ling, Hoo Sheau Farn, Trina Loh nee Ng Soh Yong
4 Singapore Telecommunications Limited Technology 4 10 40% 44% 36% Christina Hon Kwee Fong (Christina Ong), Chua Sock Koong, Teo Swee Lian, Gail Patricia Kelly
4 Lendlease Global Commercial Reit Real Estate 2 5 40% 40% NL Lee Ai Ming, Ng Hsueh Ling
6 Parkway Life REIT Real Estate 3 8 38% 38% 38% Cheah Sui Ling, Jennifer Lee Gek Choo, Rossana Annizah Binti Ahmad Rashid
7 SATS Ltd. Industrials 4 11 36% 30% 22% Euleen Goh Yiu Kiang, Jessica Tan Soon Neo, Jenny Lee Hong Wei, Deborah Ong
8 Mapletree Commercial Trust Real Estate 4 12 33% 38% 33% Kwa Kim Li, Ng Lee Hoon Amy, Sharon Lim Hwee Li, Koh Mui Ai Wendy
8 Hutchison Port Holdings Trust Industrials 3 9 33% 33% 33% Ruth Sin Ling Tsim, Sng Sow-Mei, Shih, Edith
8 Mapletree North Asia Commercial Trust Real Estate 3 9 33% 33% 22% Cindy Chow Pei Pei, Tan Su Shan, Koh Mui Ai Wendy
8 Venture Corporation Limited Technology 3 9 33% 25% 22% Kuok Oon Kwong, Tan Seok Hoong @Mrs Audrey Liow, Yeo Siew Eng
8 Nanofilm Technologies International Limited Basic Materials 2 6 33% NL NL Ong Siew Koon @ Ong Siew Khoon, Lee Lee Khoon
13 ComfortDelGro Corporation Limited Industrials 3 10 30% 30% 20% Sum Wai Fun Adeline, Tham Ee Mern Lilian, Jessica Cheam
13 SBS Transit Ltd Industrials 3 10 30% 30% 20% Susan Kong Yim Pui, Chua Mui Hoong, Lee Sok Koon, Constance
13 Singapore Press Holdings Limited Consumer Cyclicals 3 10 30% 22% 33% Janet Ang Guat Har, Tan Yen Yen, Tracey Woon
13 VICOM Limited Industrials 3 10 30% 30% 22% June Seah Lee Kiang, Tan Poh Hong, Wong Yoke Woon
17 CapitaLand Integrated Commercial Trust Real Estate 2 7 29% 11% 0% Quek Bin Hwee, Teo Swee Lian
17 Keppel REIT Real Estate 2 7 29% 29% 33% Christina Tan Hua Mui, Penny Goh @ Lee Yoke Sim Penny
17 Manulife US Real Estate Investment Trust Real Estate 2 7 29% 14% 17% Veronica Julia McCann, Karen Tay Koh
17 OUE Commercial Real Estate Investment Trust Real Estate 2 7 29% 29% 33% Tan Shu Lin, Usha Ranee Chandradas
17 The Straits Trading Company Limited Basic Materials 2 7 29% 25% 25% Chew Gek Hiang, Chew Gek Khim
22 DBS Group Holdings Ltd Financials 3 11 27% 18% 18% Euleen Goh Yiu Kiang, Woo Foong Pheng, Punita Lal
22 Mapletree Logistics Trust Real Estate 3 11 27% 18% 18% Ng Kiat, Koh Mui Ai Wendy, Lim Mei
22 Singapore Exchange Limited Financials 3 11 27% 30% 27% Chew Gek Khim, Chng Sok Hui, Jane Diplock
25 StarHub Ltd Technology 3 12 25% 25% 27% Michelle Lee Guthrie, Ng Shin Ein, Nayantara Bali
25 Ascendas India Trust Real Estate 2 8 25% 14% 11% Jessica Tan Soon Neo, Zia Mody
25 Best World International Limited Consumer Non-Cyclicals 2 8 25% 25% 33% Doreen Tan Nee Moi, Dr. Dora Hoan Beng Mui
25 Hi-P International Limited Industrials 2 8 25% 25% 33% Wong Huey Fang, Jennifer Yeo (Leong Lai Peng)
25 Jardine Cycle & Carriage Ltd Consumer Cyclicals 2 8 25% 20% 17% Lim Hwee Hua, Vimala a/p V.R. Menon
25 NetLink NBN Trust Technology 2 8 25% 25% 25% Koh Kah Sek, Ku Xian Hong
25 Pacific Century Regional Developments Limited Financials 2 8 25% 25% 25% Frances Waikwun Wong, Laura Raquel Deal-Lacey
25 Prime US REIT Real Estate 2 8 25% 29% NL Cheng Ai Phing, Professor Annie Koh
25 Suntec Real Estate Investment Trust Real Estate 2 8 25% 25% 29% Chew Gek Khim, Yu-Foo Yee Shoon
25 Cromwell European REIT Real Estate 1 4 25% 20% 20% Fang Ai Lian
35 Ascott Residence Trust Real Estate 2 9 22% 29% 29% Beh Siew Kim, Deborah Lee Siew Yin
35 City Developments Limited Real Estate 2 9 22% 25% 29% Chan Swee Liang Carolina, Jenny Lim Yin Nee
35 G.H.Y Culture & Media Holding Co., Limited Consumer Cyclicals 2 9 22% NL NL Wang Qing, Yue Lina
38 GuocoLand Limited Real Estate 2 10 20% 20% 20% Jennie Chua Kheng Yeng, Lim Suat Jien
38 Sheng Siong Group Ltd. Consumer Non-Cyclicals 2 10 20% 20% 20% Lin Ruiwen, Tan Poh Hong
38 Wing Tai Holdings Limited Real Estate 2 10 20% 20% 10% Tan Hwee Bin, Mildred Tan-Sim Beng Mei
38 Bukit Sembawang Estates Limited Real Estate 1 5 20% 17% 14% Fam Lee San
38 Fragrance Group Limited Real Estate 1 5 20% 17% 17% Grace Lim Wan Looi
43 Keppel Corporation Limited Consumer Non-Cyclicals 2 11 18% 10% 10% Penny Goh @ Lee Yoke Sim Penny, Veronica Eng Siang Yang
43 Mapletree Industrial Trust Real Estate 2 11 18% 18% 7% Mary Yeo Chor Gek, Koh Mui Ai Wendy
43 Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation Limited Financials 2 11 18% 9% 10% Christina Hon Kwee Fong (Christina Ong), Tan Yen Yen
43 Raffles Medical Group Ltd Healthcare 2 11 18% 18% 17% Sarah Lu Qinghui, Wee Beng Geok
47 Thai Beverage Public Company Limited Consumer Non-Cyclicals 3 17 18% 18% 25% Khunying Wanna Sirivadhanabhakdi, Kritika Kongsompong, Potjanee Thanavaranit
48 Singapore Technologies Engineering Ltd Industrials 2 12 17% 8% 8% May Ng Bee Bee, Song Su-Min
48 Bumitama Agri Ltd. Consumer Non-Cyclicals 1 6 17% 20% 17% Lim Christina Hariyanto
48 CDL Hospitality Trusts Real Estate 1 6 17% 17% 17% Cheah Sui Ling
48 Frasers Centrepoint Trust Real Estate 1 6 17% 17% 0% Koh Choon Fah
48 Genting Singapore Limited Consumer Cyclicals 1 6 17% 17% 14% Chan Swee Liang Carolina
48 Keppel Infrastructure Trust Utilities 1 6 17% 29% 29% Christina Tan Hua Mui
54 Fraser and Neave, Ltd Consumer Non-Cyclicals 2 14 14% 14% 14% Khunying Wanna Sirivadhanabhakdi, Siripen Sitasuwan
54 First Sponsor Group Limited Real Estate 1 7 14% 14% 14% Ting Ping Ee, Joan Maria
54 Keppel DC REIT Real Estate 1 7 14% 14% 17% Christina Tan Hua Mui
54 Sasseur Real Estate Investment Trust Real Estate 1 7 14% 13% 13% Yang Xue
58 Ascendas Real Estate Investment Trust Real Estate 1 8 13% 22% 22% Chong Chiet Ping
58 Ho Bee Land Limited Real Estate 1 8 13% 13% 13% Choo Poh Hua Josephine
58 Hotel Grand Central Limited Consumer Cyclicals 1 8 13% 13% 13% Tan Hwa Lian
58 iFAST Corporation Ltd. Technology 1 8 13% 13% 13% Janice Wu Sung Sung
58 Japfa Ltd. Consumer Non-Cyclicals 1 8 13% 13% 14% Lien Siaou-Sze
63 CapitaLand Retail China Trust Real Estate 1 9 11% 11% 11% Kuan Li Li
63 China Aviation Oil (Singapore) Corporation Ltd Energy 1 9 11% 11% 11% Bella Young Pit Lai
63 First Resources Limited Consumer Non-Cyclicals 1 9 11% 11% 14% Wong Su-Yen
63 Frasers Logistics & Commercial Trust Real Estate 1 9 11% 0% 0% Soh Onn Cheng Margaret Jane
63 SembCorp Marine Limited Industrials 1 9 11% 9% 9% Gina Lee-Wan
63 Singapore Airlines Limited Industrials 1 9 11% 11% 0% Goh Swee Chen
63 Tianjin Zhong Xin Pharmaceutical Group Corporation Limited Healthcare 1 9 11% 11% 29% Li Yan
63 Yanlord Land Group Limited Real Estate 1 9 11% 25% 25% Ng Shin Ein
71 ESR-REIT Real Estate 1 10 10% 10% 0% Stefanie Yuen Thio
71 Great Eastern Holdings Limited Financials 1 10 10% 10% 10% Teoh Lian Ee
71 SIA Engineering Company Limited Industrials 1 10 10% 10% 10% Christina Hon Kwee Fong (Christina Ong)
71 Sinarmas Land Limited Real Estate 1 10 10% 10% 10% Margaretha Natalia Widjaja
71 United Industrial Corporation Limited Real Estate 1 10 10% 0% 0% Tan Khiaw Ngoh
76 CapitaLand Limited Real Estate 1 11 9% 9% 20% Goh Swee Chen
76 Frasers Property Limited Real Estate 1 11 9% 9% 9% Khunying Wanna Sirivadhanabhakdi
76 SembCorp Industries Ltd Utilities 1 11 9% 18% 18% Dr Josephine Kwa Lay Keng
76 United Overseas Bank Limited Financials 1 11 9% 10% 9% Lim Hwee Hua
80 Olam International Limited Consumer Non-Cyclicals 1 12 8% 8% 10% Marie Elaine Teo
81 Hong Leong Finance Limited Financials 1 13 8% 8% 0% Tan Siew San
82 Wilmar International Limited Consumer Non-Cyclicals 1 14 7% 7% 0% Teo La-Mei
83 Accordia Golf Trust Consumer Cyclicals 0 5 0% 0% 0%
83 AEM Holdings Ltd Technology 0 7 0% 0% 0%
83 AIMS APAC REIT# Real Estate 0 5 0% 0% 0%
83 Frasers Hospitality Trust Real Estate 0 6 0% 0% 0%
83 Gallant Venture Ltd. Consumer Cyclicals 0 8 0% 0% 0%
83 Golden Agri-Resources Ltd Consumer Non-Cyclicals 0 8 0% 0% 0%
83 Haw Par Corporation Limited Healthcare 0 11 0% 0% 0%
83 Hotel Properties Limited Consumer Cyclicals 0 7 0% 0% 0%
83 Keppel Pacific Oak US REIT Real Estate 0 5 0% 0% 0%
83 OUE Limited Real Estate 0 6 0% 0% 0%
83 Oxley Holdings Limited Real Estate 0 6 0% 0% 0%
83 Riverstone Holdings Limited Healthcare 0 5 0% 0% 0%
83 Starhill Global Real Estate Investment Trust Real Estate 0 6 0% 0% 0%
83 Thomson Medical Group Limited# Healthcare 0 7 0% 0% 13%
83 UOB Kay Hian Holdings Limited Financials 0 7 0% 0% 0%
83 UOL Group Limited Real Estate 0 9 0% 0% 0%
83 Yangzijiang Shipbuilding (Holdings) Ltd. Industrials 0 6 0% 0% 0%
83 Zheneng Jinjiang Environment Holding Company Limited# Industrials 0 6 0% 0% 14%
NL: The company had not been listed on the Singapore Exchange at that time.
#: These companies previously had women on their boards from the period 2013 to Dec 2019.
[10] Singapore Press Holdings, SPH REIT, and Venture Corporation each appointed an additional woman onto their board in 2020, achieving 30% or more WOB. Nanofilm Technologies International listed in 2020 with 33% WOB.
[11] The female board chairs are: (1) Chew Gek Khim (Suntec Real Estate Investment Trust – non-executive director, The Straits Trading Company Limited – executive director), (2) Christina Tan Hua Mui (Keppel DC REIT – first-time director, non-executive director), (3) Doreen Tan Nee Moi (Best World International Limited – executive director), (4) Dr. Dora Hoan Beng Mui (Best World International Limited – executive director), (5) Euleen Goh Yiu Kiang (SATS Ltd – independent director), (6) Penny Goh @ Lee Yoke Sim Penny (Keppel REIT – non-executive director), (7) Teo Swee Lian (CapitaLand Integrated Commercial Trust – independent director).
[12] First-time directors refer to directors who have not previously served on listed company boards.
[13] The SGX listing rules* (effective 1 Jan 2022) allows a director who has been on the board for more than nine years to be deemed as independent if his/her appointment as an independent director has been sought and approved in separate resolutions by (i) all shareholders; and (ii) all shareholders, excluding shareholders who also serve as the directors or the chief executive officer of the company.
* Rule 210(5)(d) of the SGX Listing Rules (Mainboard) / Rule 406(3)(d) of the SGX Listing Rules (Catalist)
[14] The improvement to 31% WOB was due to the inclusion of a company with 33% women on board (Nanofilm Technologies International Limited) which listed in 2020.
[15] Mainly as a result of two companies each adding one woman onto their board, one board being replaced by another with 30%WOB, and one all-male board exiting the Top 100 because it had delisted in 2020.
[16] Singapore’s Top 100 primary-listed companies improved by 1.4 percentage points from Dec 2019 to Dec 2020, compared to an average of 1.6 percentage points in the two preceding years.
[17] (a) UK’s FTSE100 improved by 2.8 percentage points from 32.4%WOB in Oct 2019 to 35.2% in Sep 2020, greater than its average of 2.4 percentage points improvement in the two preceding years.
(b) Australia’s ASX200 improved by 2.3 percentage points from 30.1% in Dec 2019 to 32.4% in Dec 2020, greater than its average 2 percentage point improvement in the two preceding years.
[18] The Refinitiv® Business Classification

Annex C: Statistics for Statutory Boards

1. Statutory boards showed improvement in women’s participation on boards

Statutory boards19 continued to show the best progress among the three sectors, rising 2.4 percentage points to 27.5%.

2. About a third of statutory boards have 30% or more WOB

31% of statutory boards had 30% or more women on boards in 2020, an improvement from 28% in 2019. Five statutory boards joined this group in 202020, while two fell below 30% WOB. One all-male board remains.

3. 20% of statutory boards are chaired by women

13 out of 65 statutory boards (20%) are chaired by women. This comprises 12 women21.

4. Improvements seen across most ministries in statutory boards

5. Statutory boards’ women’s participation on boards

Table 5: Statutory boards’ women’s’ participation on boards, as at 31 December 2020

Ministry S/N Statutory Board %WOB
(# women / board seats)
MCCY 1 National Heritage Board (NHB) 53% (8/15)
2 National Arts Council (NAC) 50% (6/12)
3 People’s Association (PA) 29% (4/14)
4 Sport Singapore (SPORTSG) 27% (4/15)
5 Majlis Ugama Islam Singapura (MUIS) 26% (5/19)
MCI 6 National Library Board (NLB) 31% (5/16)
7 Info-Communications Media Development Authority of Singapore (IMDA) 17% (3/18)
MHA 8 Home Team Science & Technology Agency (HTX) 27% (4/15)
9 Casino Regulatory Authority of Singapore (CRA) 25% (4/16)
10 Yellow Ribbon Singapore (YRSG) 20% (3/15)
MINDEF 11 Defence Science & Technology Agency (DSTA) 15% (2/13)
MinLaw 12 Singapore Land Authority (SLA) 27% (4/15)
13 Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS) 14% (2/14)
14 Land Surveyors Board (LSB) 14% (1/7)
MND 15 Housing Development Board (HDB) 45% (5/11)
16 National Parks Board (NPB) 27% (3/11)
17 Board of Architects (BOA) 27% (4/15)
18 Council for Estate Agencies (CEA) 23% (3/13)
19 Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) 23% (3/13)
20 Professional Engineers Board, Singapore (PEB) 21% (3/14)
21 Building and Construction Authority (BCA) 7% (1/14)
MOE 22 Science Centre Board (SCB) 38% (6/16)
23 Institute of Technical Education (ITE) 37% (7/19)
24 Skillsfuture Singapore (SSG) 36% (5/14)
25 Institute of Southeast Asian Studies – Yusof Ishak Institute (ISEAS – YII) 33% (3/9)
26 Republic Polytechnic (RP) 28% (5/18)
27 Singapore Polytechnic (SP) 25% (4/16)
28 Nanyang Polytechnic (NYP) 24% (4/17)
29 Singapore Examinations & Assessment Board (SEAB) 20% (2/10)
30 Temasek Polytechnic (TP) 17% (3/18)
31 Ngee Ann Polytechnic (NP) 11% (2/18)
MOF 32 Singapore Totalisator Board (TOTE BOARD) 38% (5/13)
33 Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) 21% (3/14)
34 Singapore Accountancy Commission (SAC) 15% (2/13)
35 Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS) 10% (1/10)
MOH 36 Singapore Nursing Board (SNB) 93% (13/14)
37 Singapore Pharmacy Council (SPC) 80% (8/10)
38 TCM Practitioners Board (TCMPB) 50% (5/10)
39 Singapore Medical Council (SMC) 29% (7/24)
40 Health Promotion Board (HPB) 27% (3/11)
41 Health Sciences Authority (HSA) 18% (2/11)
42 Singapore Dental Council (SDC) 18% (2/11)
MOM 43 Central Provident Fund Board (CPFB) 33% (5/15)
44 Singapore Labour Foundation (SLF) 29% (2/7)
45 Workforce Singapore (WSG) 23% (3/13)
MOT 46 Public Transport Council (PTC) 35% (6/17)
47 Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) 23% (3/13)
48 Land Transport Authority (LTA) 20% (3/15)
49 Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) 19% (3/16)
MSE 50 National Environment Agency (NEA) 29% (4/14)
51 Singapore Food Agency (SFA) 29% (4/14)
52 Public Utilities Board (PUB) 18% (2/11)
MSF 53 National Council of Social Service (NCSS) 39% (9/23)
MTI 54 Sentosa Development Corporation (SDC) 40% (6/15)
55 Hotels Licensing Board (HLB) 40% (2/5)
56 Singapore Tourism Board (STB) 33% (4/12)
57 Competition and Consumer Commission of Singapore (CCCS) 33% (3/9)
58 Energy Market Authority (EMA) 27% (3/11)
59 Economic Development Board (EDB) 19% (3/16)
60 Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) 14% (3/21)
61 JTC Corporation (JTC) 13% (2/15)
62 Enterprise Singapore (ESG) 12% (2/17)
PMO 63 Civil Service College (CSC) 38% (5/13)
64 Government Technology Agency (GOVTECH) 27% (4/15)
65 Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) 0% (0/10)
[19] Refers to all statutory boards in Singapore. There were 65 in 2019 and 2020; and 64 in 2018.
[20] National Council of Social Service (NCSS), Republic Polytechnic (RP), Sentosa Development Corporation (SDC), Singapore Tourism Board (STB), Skillsfuture Singapore (SSG).
[21] The female board Chairs are: (1) Anita Fam (National Council of Social Service), (2) Chan Heng Chee (Institute of Southeast Asian Studies – Yusof Ishak Institute), (3) Chan Lai Fung (Agency for Science, Technology and Research), (4) Goh Swee Chen (National Arts Council), (5) Ho Peng (Singapore Examinations & Assessment Board), (6) Janet Ang (Singapore Polytechnic), (7) Assoc Prof Lita Chew (Singapore Pharmacy Council), (8) Tan Ching Yee (Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority & Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore), (9) Tan Yen Yen (Science Centre Board), (10) Dr Tracy Carol Ayre (Singapore Nursing Board), (11) Yeoh Chee Yan (National Heritage Board), (12) Yu-Foo Yee Shoon (TCM Practitioners Board).

Annex D: Statistics for Institutions of a Public Character (“IPCs”)

1. IPCs showed improvement in women’s participation on boards

The 100 Institutions of a Public Character with the largest amount of donation receipts (“Top 100 IPCs”)22 improved by 1 percentage points to 28.8%. It is still the sector with the highest WOB.

2. Close to half of Top 100 IPCs have 30% or more WOB. Few all-male boards remain

For Top 100 IPCs, 45% of boards have 30% or more women on boards, an improvement from 38% in 2019. 12 Top 100 IPCs joined this group in 202023, while five fell below 30% WOB. Three all-male IPC boards remain.

3. Almost 20% of Top 100 IPCs are chaired by women

17 Top 100 IPCs chaired by women. This comprises 15 women24.

4. Improvements seen across most sectors within IPCs

5. Top 100 IPCs’ women’s participation on boards

Table 6: Top 100 IPCs’ women’s’ participation on boards, as at 31 December 2020

Primary Sector S/N IPC Name %WOB
(# women / board seats)
Arts and Heritage 1 The Esplanade Co Ltd 54% (7/13)
2 National Gallery Singapore 47% (7/15)
3 Arts House Ltd. 44% (4/9)
4 Nanyang Academy Of Fine Arts 39% (7/18)
5 Lasalle College Of The Arts Limited 30% (3/10)
6 Singapore Art Museum 27% (3/11)
7 Singapore Chinese Orchestra Company Limited 25% (3/12)
8 Singapore Symphonia Company Limited 19% (3/16)
9 Singapore Arts School Ltd. 18% (2/11)
10 Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre 13% (2/16)
Community 11 People’s Association Community Centres/Clubs Building Fund 40% (2/5)
Education 12 ITE Education Fund (ITEEF) 63% (5/8)
13 Republic Polytechnic Education Fund 43% (3/7)
14 Singapore University Of Technology And Design 40% (6/15)
15 Crest Secondary School 40% (4/10)
16 Northlight School 36% (4/11)
17 Singapore University Of Social Sciences 31% (5/16)
18 NUS High School Of Mathematics And Science 31% (4/13)
19 National University Of Singapore 30% (6/20)
20 Spectra Secondary School 29% (4/14)
21 Singapore Institute Of Technology 22% (4/18)
22 Singapore Management University 21% (4/19)
23 Dyslexia Association Of Singapore 18% (2/11)
24 Nanyang Technological University 16% (3/19)
25 Assumption Pathway School 13% (2/16)
26 Singapore Polytechnic Endowment Fund 0% (0/3)
Health 27 HCA Hospice Care 75% (9/12)
28 Home Nursing Foundation 55% (6/11)
29 Dover Park Hospice 45% (9/20)
30 Assisi Hospice 43% (6/14)
31 Bone Marrow Donor Programme, The 42% (5/12)
32 St Luke’s Eldercare Ltd. 36% (4/11)
33 Ju Eng Home For Senior Citizens 36% (5/14)
34 Singapore Heart Foundation 35% (6/17)
35 The National Kidney Foundation 33% (4/12)
36 Singhealth Fund 28% (5/18)
37 Lions Home For The Elders 27% (3/11)
38 Singapore Thong Chai Medical Institution 27% (8/30)
39 Singapore Cancer Society 25% (4/16)
40 SATA Commhealth 25% (3/12)
41 Singapore Chung Hwa Medical Institution 25% (3/12)
42 St Luke’s Hospital 23% (3/13)
43 All Saints Home 20% (2/10)
44 Sunshine Welfare Action Mission (SWAMI) 20% (2/10)
45 Ren Ci Hospital 19% (5/26)
46 Kwong Wai Shiu Hospital 19% (6/32)
47 Society For The Aged Sick 18% (2/11)
48 Sian Chay Medical Institution 13% (2/15)
49 Thye Hua Kwan Nursing Home Limited 10% (1/10)
50 Bright Vision Hospital 8% (1/12)
51 St Andrew’s Mission Hospital 8% (2/25)
52 Ang Mo Kio – Thye Hua Kwan Hospital Ltd. 0% (0/14)
53 Sunlove Abode For Intellectually-Infirmed Ltd 0% (0/10)
Social and Welfare 54 Autism Resource Centre (Singapore) 80% (8/10)
55 AWWA Ltd. 77% (10/13)
56 SG Enable Ltd. 64% (9/14)
57 Singapore Buddhist Welfare Services 56% (5/9)
58 Cerebral Palsy Alliance Singapore 50% (7/14)
59 Association For Persons With Special Needs 50% (6/12)
60 Catholic Welfare Services, Singapore 50% (6/12)
61 Autism Association (Singapore) 50% (5/10)
62 Movement For The Intellectually Disabled Of Singapore (MINDS) 46% (6/13)
63 Singapore Children’s Society 42% (8/19)
64 Buddhist Compassion Relief Tzu-Chi Foundation (Singapore) 42% (5/12)
65 People’s Association – (Community Development Council Project Fund Management Committee) 42% (5/12)
66 Temasek Foundation Cares CLG Limited 40% (2/5)
67 NCSS Charitable Fund 39% (9/23)
68 Sree Narayana Mission (Singapore) 35% (8/23)
69 AMKFSC Community Services Ltd. 33% (4/12)
70 Rainbow Centre, Singapore 31% (4/13)
71 Fei Yue Community Services 30% (3/10)
72 Fei Yue Family Service Centre 30% (3/10)
73 Touch Community Services Limited 30% (3/10)
74 Montfort Care 27% (3/11)
75 Methodist Welfare Services 24% (5/21)
76 Care Corner Singapore Ltd 23% (3/13)
77 Salvation Army, The 20% (2/10)
78 Sathya Sai Social Service (Singapore) 20% (2/10)
79 SPD 18% (2/11)
80 Young Men’s Christian Association Of Singapore 18% (3/17)
81 Pertapis Education And Welfare Centre 14% (3/21)
82 Muslim Missionary Society, Singapore – Jamiyah Welfare Fund 10% (1/10)
83 Presbyterian Community Services 8% (1/12)
84 Singapore Anglican Community Services 8% (1/13)
85 Metta Welfare Association 7% (1/15)
86 Thye Hua Kwan Moral Charities Limited 6% (1/16)
Sports 87 Football Association Of Singapore 13% (2/15)
Others 88 The Community Foundation Of Singapore 64% (7/11)
89 Gardens By The Bay 55% (6/11)
90 Yayasan Mendaki 29% (6/21)
91 Singapore Red Cross Society 28% (5/18)
92 National Volunteer And Philanthropy Centre 27% (3/11)
93 NTUC Education And Training Fund 22% (2/9)
94 SymAsia Singapore Fund 20% (2/10)
95 Garden City Fund 19% (3/16)
96 Chinese Development Assistance Council 18% (3/17)
97 Singapore Indian Development Association (SINDA) 15% (3/20)
98 Temasek Foundation Innovates CLG Limited 14% (1/7)
99 Association Of Muslim Professionals 10% (1/10)
100 Temasek Life Sciences Laboratory Limited 10% (1/10)
[22] IPCs with gender specific objectives resulting in all-women boards are excluded.
[23] AMKFSC Community Services Ltd., Lasalle College of The Arts Limited, National University Of Singapore, NCSS Charitable Fund
NUS High School of Mathematics and Science, People’s Association Community Centres/Clubs Building Fund, Rainbow Centre, Singapore
Republic Polytechnic Education Fund, Singapore Buddhist Welfare Services, Singapore University Of Social Sciences, Singapore University Of Technology And Design, Sree Narayana Mission (Singapore).
[24] The female board Chairs are: (1) Caroline Lim Seow Ling (HCA Hospice Care), (2) Chiang Loo Fern (Methodist Welfare Services), (3) Chung Wei Han (AWWA Ltd.), (4) Fam Siu Ping Anita (Assisi Hospice & NCSS Charitable Fund), (5) Gan Christine (The Community Foundation Of Singapore), (6) Janice Wong Tzen Yuen (Cerebral Palsy Alliance Singapore), (7) Lety De Joya @ Kuan Yan (Singapore Buddhist Welfare Services), (8) Low Khah Gek (ITE Education Fund), (9) Low Sin Leng (Nanyang Academy Of Fine Arts), (10) Low Yen Ling (People’s Association – (Community Development Council Project Fund Management Committee)), (11) Phua Lay Peng Denise (Autism Association (Singapore) & Autism Resource Centre (Singapore)), (12) Seah Jiak Choo (NUS High School Of Mathematics And Science), (13) Sim Beng Mei Mildred (National Volunteer And Philanthropy Centre) – stepped down on 1 Jan 2021, (14) Thang Leng Leng (Fei Yue Family Service Centre), (15) Toh Kim Kiat (Buddhist Compassion Relief Tzu-Chi Foundation (Singapore)).

Sources of data for Annexes A, B, C and D:

  • Listed company data was collected from all SGX-listed companies’ announcements reported to SGX, from 2013 up to 31 December 2020 (inclusive). Data does not reflect any disclosures after 31 December 2020.
  • Sources of country-specific information on women’s participation on boards:
    • Australia – Australian Institute of Company Directors
    • Germany – German Institute for Economic Research DIW Weekly Report 4+5/2020, ‘Women Executives Barometer 2020’
    • Hong Kong SAR – Webb-Site.com
    • India – primeinfobase.come
    • Japan – 30% Club
    • Malaysia – MalayMail article ‘More organisations in Malaysia embracing gender diversity, says 30% Club’, 18 Nov 2020.
    • New Zealand – NZX Limited’s Diversity Statistics
    • Norway – Statistics Norway
    • Singapore – Council for Board Diversity
    • UK –Hampton-Alexander Review |||| Hampton-Alexander Report 2020’
    • US –Bloomberg Article, ‘S&P 500 Reshuffling Marks a Return of the All-Male Board’ published on 9 Mar 2021.
  • Statutory boards: collected from government directory, Public Service Division and statutory boards’ websites, as at Dec 2020.
  • Institutions of a Public Character: collected from Charity Portal, as at Dec 2020.

Statistics Reports

For SGX-listed Companies, Statutory Boards and IPCs

Dec 2020  Dec 2019  Jun 2019

For SGX-listed Companies

Dec 2018  Jun 2018  Dec 2017  Jun 2017  Dec 2016  Jun 2016  Dec 2015  June 2015  Dec 2014