The European Parliament is well known for its commitment to gender equality. Although this is the case, women remain under-represented in politics and public life at local, national and European levels. The percentage of MEPs in the European Parliament has increased over the years. From 1952 until the first direct election in 1979, there were only 31 women in the House of Representatives. The representation of women in the European Parliament in the first direct elections was 15.2 percent and grew with each subsequent election. It is currently at its highest level ever, at 40.4 percent.
The number of women in leadership positions in Parliament is also on the rise. There are currently eight Vice-Chairpersons (out of 14) and 11 Chairpersons of Parliamentary Committees (out of 22). There was an increase from the previous convocation when there were five vice-chairpersons and 11 board chairpersons (out of a total of 23).
With regard to Croatia and the representation of women in the European Parliament, women's representation is 36%, out of a total of 11 MEPs, 4 are women. Compared to the world average and the average in the national parliaments of the Member States, women's representation in the EP is above average.
For the first time, the head of the European Commission is a woman - Ursula von der Leyen. Her desire as a woman in leadership is a gender-balanced College of Commissioners ahead of the vote in the European Parliament on her appointment, and accordingly presented her candidates, 12 of whom are women versus 14 men, making for an equal number.
Parliament is seeking the appointment of more women in leadership positions in economic and monetary policy, and for the first time a woman could head the European Central Bank.