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Andorran women make history

10 Jun, 2011

54% of legislators in the tiny European state of Andorra are now women, making it the first country in Europe to achieve more than 50% women in its parliament, and only the second country in the world (after Rwanda).

Previously 32% of its 28 members were women; now, with 15 women and 13 men it has leapfrogged most of the rest of Europe and stands second in the global league table.

In the election held in April 2011 50% of those elected were women, but on 25 May one of the men was replaced by a woman, raising the level even further.

The only legislature in the UK to hit the 50% mark was the Welsh Assembly in 2003, but Wales does not feature in the global records because it is not a sovereign state.

Women constitute 22% of the Westminster parliament, so that the UK is 50th equal in the global league table, on a par with the Czech Republic, Eritrea and Uzbekistan, just ahead of Serbia, China and Italy and just behind Pakistan, the Philippines and Mauritania.

The top countries wordwide now are*:

Rwanda                  56%

Andorra                  54%

Sweden                  45%

South Africa            44.5%

Cuba                      43%

Iceland                   43%

Finland                   42.5%

Norway                   40%

Belgium                   39%

Netherlands              39%

Mozambique             39%

Angola                     39%

Costa Rica                39%

Argentina                 38.5%

Denmark                  38%

Uganda                    37%

Spain                       37%

*Percentages taken from International Parliamentary Union site at and rounded to the nearest whole percentage.