DISCUSSION

New rules on disclosing gender wage gaps

By Staff Writer
October 21, 2022
In 2021, a survey by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) revealed that the wage gap between men and women in Japan was 22.1 percent, or almost double of the average gap of 11.7 percent in OECD countries in 2020. Several reasons can be attributed to this, including the fact that it is tougher for women to reach managerial positions as they often have to resign due to childbirth and childcare. Additionally, there is a large difference of treatment between regular and “non-regular” employees. Since more than half of female employees in Japan are non-regular, this further widens the wage gap.
A graphic of a man and a woman looking at piles of money. The man's pile is higher.
But the Japanese government has been working on changing these numbers. Indeed, on July 8, 2022, it declared the establishment of new policies known as the "Framework Policies" which require companies with at least 301 employees to disclose gender wage gaps among their employees. This information should be disseminated in their annual security reports and on their websites or through other means, within about three months from the end of their business year. There are around 18,000 companies in Japan that have more than 300 employees, and to some of them, the rules will apply as soon as October.
An aerial view of Tokyo from near Tokyo Tower, looking toward the harbor
The government could decide to name and shame companies that do not abide by this requirement and that refuse to follow the directives of local labor bureaus to do so.

In addition to supporting female participation in the workforce and increasing gender equality, this new policy can encourage male employees to take paternity leave as recent statistics show that only 12.65% of men took parental leave in 2020.
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