Briefing 
 

Women entrepreneurs 

MEPs urge EU member states to remove hurdles for women entrepreneurs, and table strategies for making full use of female entrepreneurship potential to boost growth and prosperity, in a draft resolution to be debated on Monday and voted on Tuesday.

About one-third of EU entrepreneurs are women. The specific hurdles that they face include gaining access to funding and bank loans, unbalanced sharing of family responsibilities, a lack of childcare facilities and stereotypes about leadership qualities, says the text drafted by the Women's Rights and Gender Equality Committee.


The draft resolution calls on member states to:


  • facilitate and simplify access to finance,
  • include gender quotas in targeted support,
  • use EU funds to guarantee affordable quality care for children and older people,
  • improve the work/life balance (e.g. by promoting paternity leave), and
  • promote an entrepreneurial culture in education and training and encourage more women to choose careers in scientific, finance and high-growth, profitable sectors (e.g. new technologies, including green technology, digital environments and IT).

Note to editors

 

Statistics

  • Women accounted for just 31% of entrepreneurs (10.3 million) in the EU-28 in 2012 (Commission report on Statistical data on Women entrepreneurs in Europe, 2014)
  • Female entrepreneurs tend to concentrate on sectors that are considered less profitable, such as education, health care and community work, whereas men predominate in high-growth-potential sectors such as technology and IT
  • Women are more likely than men to prefer working as an employee (by a margin of 63% to 53%) and men are more likely than women to favour self-employment (42% to 33%) (Flash Eurobarometer 2012)
  • 30% of female entrepreneurs work part-time, compared to 12% of men
  • Female entrepreneur incomes were 6% lower than mens in 2012
  • Womens businesses tend to remain smaller: only 23% of female entrepreneurs in the EU are employers, compared to 30% of men. (Commission (2014), report on Statistical data on Women entrepreneurs in Europe)

Procedure: Non-legislative resolution

2015/2111(INI)

Debate: Monday, 18 January

Vote: Tuesday, 19 January


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