Social challenges

The gender pay gap continues to close – but slowly

10/03/2022 PNG

Between 2000 and 2020, the gender pay gap – defined as “the difference between median earnings of men and women relative to median earnings of men” – across OECD countries fell from 18.1% to 11.6%.

This trend has been observed in most countries in the period, although how their experiences differ vary markedly. Gender pay gaps in 2000 in Korea, Canada, the Czech Republic and Norway were 41.7%, 23.9%, 16.9% and 9.2%, respectively (Czech data from 2001); by 2020, they fell to 31.5% (-10.2 pp), 16.1% (-7.8 pp), 11.6% (-5.3 pp) and 4.8% (-4.4 pp), respectively. Colombia saw the gap widen after 2007, narrowing again after its 2015 peak.

However, the economic impact of COVID-19 has been greater on women than on men. Women have also had to shoulder a greater burden of household work. The pay gap between women and men may be smaller than it used to be – but there is still a gap.

See also: More OECD Data on the Gender Wage Gap