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Clifford Chance aims for 40% women among global partners by 2030

INTERNATIONAL law firm Clifford Chance has launched global and regional targets for gender, LGBT+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) and ethnicity representation.

By 2030, at least 40 per cent of the firm's global partners should be women, while at least 40 per cent will be men, based on the new targets.

In the Asia-Pacific region and the UK, the goal will be to increase the proportion of female partners by 25 per cent by 2025 and by 60 per cent by 2030. The firm's website for its Singapore office lists six women out of a total of 27 partners, as at Wednesday morning.

The Americas and Continental Europe regions aim to raise the proportion of female partners by 35 per cent by 2025 and by 100 per cent by 2030. Meanwhile, the Middle Eastern region has a separate target of attaining 12.5 per cent female partners by 2025 and 25 per cent by 2030.

In addition, the gender targets of having at least 40 per cent women and at least 40 per cent men have been extended to all levels throughout the firm's structures globally and regionally - including to counsel, senior associate, associate, business professionals and leadership groups - by 2025.

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Clifford Chance has also introduced a 3 per cent LGBT+ global partner target by 2025.

As for the ethnicity targets, the US and UK regions are the first to implement them. They include ensuring that 15 per cent of new partners as well as 30 per cent of senior associates and senior business professionals are from minority ethnicities.

Global managing partner Matthew Layton said: "I recognise that today, inclusion and equality of opportunity isn't the lived experience for many of our people, and we have to do much better.

"We need to be actively campaigning and forging positive, inclusive environments which are enriched by the diversity of our people," he added.

Laura King, partner and global head of people and talent at Clifford Chance, said the new targets "are a step forward, but not a complete solution".

"Talking about numbers is the easy part; we now need to deliver on the actions which will enable inclusive teams to thrive," she added.

The law firm promised to break down "the barriers that are restricting recruitment, progress and retention", and hopes to attract the best people from the widest talent pools.

Tiernan Brady, global director of inclusion, commented: "The top of our firm needs to look like the rest of the firm and the societies we are based in. It is both a core value and an economic imperative, and it is the future for the legal sector."

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