Carol Paton Editor at large

The wage gap between the highest and lowest paid and between men and women should be disclosed in company financial statements, says an agreement reached at the Jobs Summit over the weekend. Business, represented by Business Unity SA, agreed companies would be encouraged to voluntarily disclose pay differentials with a view to making these commitments compulsory within 12 months. Disclosure of ratios between the highest and lowest paid has come to be regarded worldwide as a way to promote a fairer society as well as provide a disincentive to excessive executive pay and is compulsory in an increasing number of countries, from the US to India. Disclosure of the gender pay gap is done less widely, with the UK recently becoming the first country to make it compulsory.

In SA the differential are anecdotally believed to be excessive due to the fact that remuneration for CEOs in top firms has tended to be benchmarked against global competitors. SA is the most unequal society in the w...

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