Framework Conditions in Spain

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Gender Pay Gap in Spain

The gender pay gap in Spain has reached 15.1 per cent. Main causes of the wage gap are both horizontal and vertical segregation of the labour market. In addition, women tend to work more part-time and share a large burden of the household work.

Regulations in Spain

In 2007, the Constitution of Spain has been amended by the guaranteed principle of gender equality. In addition, the Gender Equality Act from 2007 and the Law on the Workers Statute inclused the principle of gender equality and equal pay for equal work and work of equal value.

"Companies with more than 250 employees are obliged to formulate and implement gender equality plans, which must be negotiated with the workers' representations. Equality plans may cover different issues with direct and/or indirect impact on the gender pay gap, including inter alia, access to employment, occupational classification, remuneration, etc."[1]

In 2019, the Spanish government modified the 2007 law: Companies with more than 50 employees are now required to analyse their wage structures and to prove that they pay equal pay for bot equal work and work of equal value. In addition, these companies have to write an equality plan. If companies fail to do so, fines of up to 6,250 Euros will be drawn.[2]

Equality Label

"A business equality label is yearly granted by the Secretariat of State for Social Services and Equality to distinguish employers for outstanding achievements in the implementation of equal treatment and equal opportunities policies between women and men." Among the criteria for the selection of outstanding companies are neutral remuneration criteria as well as job classification systems free from gender bias.[3]


"Spain’s gender equality policies and institutions between 2009 and 2016 have been progressively dismantled and are currently endangered by the austerity policies adopted in Spain in response to the 2008 economic crisis. The backlash provoked by austerity policies has shown a lack of prioritization of gender equality policies in a context of conflicting economic priorities. Although the strategy of gender mainstreaming is backed in Spain through a legal mandate at both the central and the regional levels, gender has not been mainstreamed into policy reforms adopted in response to the economic crisis. In this context of backlash, the future of gender equality policies in Spain looks extremely uncertain."[4]


  1. European Commission: Legislation and Equality Plans
  2. Latham & Watkins: New Spanish Employment Law Imposes Equal Opportunity Regulations and the Working Day Record
  3. European Commission: Legislation and Equality Plans
  4. European Parliament: Gender Equality Policies in Spain


European Commission: Legislation and Equality Plans

European Commission: Job evaluation free from gender bias / making pay differences transparant

European Commission: Facts and Figures on the Gender Pay Gap

Antidiskriminierungsstelle des Bundes: Gesetzgebung zur Entgeltgleichheit im internationalen Vergleich

Antidiskriminierungsstelle des Bundes: Gleiche Arbeit, ungleicher Lohn? Zahlen und Fakten zu Entgeltungleichheit in Deutschland und Europa

European added value of applying the principle of Equal Pay for men and women for equal work or work of equal value - Research Paper

European Parliament: Gender Equality Policies in Spain