Bid to get more women on boards

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Lord Davies of Abersoch, the former chief executive of Standard Chartered, is to head a review looking at ways to get more women into British boardrooms.

Lord Davies's appointment was unveiled yesterday by Ed Davey, the Business minister, who said the Government would "lead by example" on diversity, setting itself a target of appointing women to half of all new appointments to public bodies by the end of this Parliament.

"While it is essential that the boards of UK companies are meritocratic, the fact that there are only 131 female directors in FTSE 100 companies means that we cannot be using all the skills and talents that make our workforce so competitive," said Lord Davies yesterday. The peer, who was trade minister in the Labour government, will be able to continue to work in the private sector while he conducts the review.

The review is expected to report its final recommendations by the end of the year.