The Philippines topped Grant Thornton International's 2020 Women in Business report with the most number of women occupying senior management positions. The annual report studied 32 countries and found that this year, 43 percent of the Philippines' top leadership roles were being held by women. This is the highest percentage of women in top business positions for the Philippines, as the percentage was 37 percent in 2019, 37.5 percent in 2018, 40 percent in 2017, and 39 percent in 2016.

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The Philippines beat South Africa, Poland, Mexico, and Indonesia in the survey, which closed the top five slots of the report. The Philippines also outranked the U.S., U.K., U.A.E., South Korea, Germany, France, Spain, and a number of other countries and economies. Japan ranked last in the survey.

The top three positions reported to be held by Filipino women were chief finance officer (38 percent), human resources director (36 percent), and chief operating officer (23 percent). These were the same top positions held by women in the 2019 report. Other positions held by Filipino women are chief executive officer with 22 percent and sales directors with 19 percent.

"We are seeing that the most significant roles in business operations-strategy, finance, and people are being held by women. The percentages have decreased this year, and it is interesting to note that women are holding these same three roles. We hope to see more women step up into the CEO or managing director role in the future," said Marivic Españo, P&A Grant Thornton chairperson and CEO.

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The report surveyed 4,812 businesses around the world, including 105 from the Philippines, and found that only 29 percent of top management positions around the world are held by women. This is the same global percentage as last year's report, indicating that the road for women representation in business has stalled.

To combat this, 94 percent of Philippine firms are stepping up and making an effort to increase gender diversity and remove gender parity at senior levels. Meanwhile, 36 percent of Philippine companies will ensure equal access to developmental work opportunities, and 33 percent will enable flexible working, review recruitment approached, and provide mentoring and coaching.

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