Published 11 Mar 2024
Posted by Tumim

Johannesburg, 11 March 2024 – The Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) today joined peer bourses in an annual bell-ringing ceremony, a resonant campaign aimed at amplifying the call for gender equality. This symbolic act, celebrated worldwide among dozens of stock exchanges, highlights the JSE's commitment to fostering an inclusive economy where gender equality is actively pursued.


Launched in 2015 through a collaboration among the Sustainable Stock Exchanges Initiative, the UN Global Compact, UN Women, the International Finance Corporation, and the World Federation of Exchanges, the ‘Ring the Bell for Gender Equality’ initiative is an annual highlight commemorated on International Women’s Day.


The bell-ringing ceremonies are designed to spotlight the critical influence of the private sector in promoting gender equality, contributing to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals, and enhancing awareness of the Women's Empowerment Principles (WEPs).


"We stand at a pivotal moment in the pursuit of gender equality, both in South Africa and around the world. As leaders in the financial community, it is incumbent upon us to lead by example, demonstrating our unwavering commitment to the empowerment of women. Our participation in this global bell-ringing ceremony reflects our deep-seated belief in the transformative power of equality to drive economic growth and societal progress," said Vuyo Lee, Director: Marketing and Corporate Affairs at the JSE.


In conjunction with this year's ceremony, the JSE hosted a market open event featuring Dineo Lioma, the esteemed Co-Founder and CEO of Deep Medical Therapeutics, as its keynote speaker. A visionary in the MedTech field, Lioma's entrepreneurial journey is defined by her passion for innovation and her commitment to building impactful businesses that not only generate jobs but also significantly enhance healthcare across Africa.


“Listed companies that invest in women entrepreneurs in Africa stand to benefit from the strong performance and resilience demonstrated by these businesses. This not only enhances the companies’ financial performance but also contributes to the overall economic stability of the regions where these businesses operate” said Lioma.


The imperative to invest in women is a cornerstone for global economic development. Yet, the stark reality faced today is that, without a significant increase in investment, over 340 million women and girls are projected to remain in extreme poverty by 2030. A formidable barrier to gender equality is the acute shortage of funding, evidenced by a daunting annual shortfall of USD 360 billion needed for gender equality initiatives. The urgency of addressing this gap has never been clearer, especially in light of the 2024 International Women's Day theme, “Invest in women: Accelerate progress”.


In South Africa, according to the Quarterly Labour Force Survey for the second quarter of 2023, the labour force participation rate for women stood at 54,3% compared with 64,9% for men, meaning that across all age groups, women are less likely to be in the labour force compared to men.


The JSE recognises the vital synergy of women in leadership and the importance of gender equality in South Africa.


Every year, the JSE hosts its #SheInvests conference, an initiative that provides expert insights and practical solutions to educate South African women about financial literacy, investment strategies and the paramount importance of economic inclusion. In terms of the JSE listing requirements, listed companies must report to their shareholders on gender representation at board level. This is mirrored in the 56% and 78% female representation in the JSE’s Board and Exco.






The Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) has a well-established history of operating as a marketplace for trading financial products. It is a pioneering, globally connected exchange group that enables inclusive economic growth through trusted, world-class, socially responsible products, and services for the investor of the future. It offers secure and efficient primary and secondary capital markets across a diverse range of securities, spanning equities, derivatives, and debt markets. It prides itself on being the market of choice for local and international investors looking to gain exposure to leading capital markets on the African continent.


The JSE is currently ranked in the Top 20 largest stock exchanges in the world by market capitalisation, and is the largest stock exchange in Africa, having been in operation for 136 years. As a leading global exchange, the JSE co-creates, unlocks value & makes real connections happen. 


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