Under the new rules, Swiss firms with 100 or more employees will have to provide a gender pay gap analysis every four years until 2032.
After Wednesday’s announcement by the Swiss government, the first such analysis must now be prepared by mid-2021. The figures must be reviewed independently with results made available to company staff.
While the new rules apply to just 0.9 percent of Swiss companies, these firms employ 46 percent of all workers in the country, the Swiss government said in a statement.
No sanctions have been specified for firms that do not carry out gender pay gap analyses under the new regime. This has led some critics to dismiss them as a “gender guideline”.
Gender pay gap of 18.3 percent
Male employees in Switzerland earned an average 18.3 percent more than their female colleagues in 2016, according to the Swiss Federal Statistics Office.
Of this amount, 44 percent could not be explained by factors including the different duties carried out by women in the workplace, differing levels of responsibility for men and women, and wage differences between industries.
In June, hundreds of thousands of women across Switzerland went out on strike for equal pay and gender equality in a protest that garnered international attention.