New report confirms gender wage gap in Monaco, finance sector sees biggest loss for women

New figures by IMSEE confirm that women in Monaco still earn significantly less than their male counterparts for the same work, with the biggest losses for women seen in the finance industries. Monaco Life spoke to Women’s Rights Delegate Céline Cottalorda about how the government is addressing these glaring disparities.  

As part of its report on salaries in Monaco’s private sector in 2022, IMSEE highlighted the pay gap that exists between the genders in the Principality’s private sector.

It shows that, in positions earning €3,500 gross or less per month, the distribution between men and women last year was relatively even. In fact, women’s median salary of €3,103 per month was 1.5% higher than men.

But overall, women earned around 19.2% less than men for full-time work, equivalent to €951 per month. And it is in the higher salaries where the figure becomes significantly disproportionate.

Where are the biggest salary disparities?

The pay gap between women and men varies considerably depending on the sector of activity concerned. In 2022, the median salary of men working in financial and insurance activities was almost 60% higher than that of women or +€2,187. The average salary in this Major Economic Sector (MES) is also more than double that of women: +117.4% or +€5,988.

Women are largely under represented among the top earners in this sector, representing only 18.2% of the top 10% earners, although they account for 49.5% of the sector’s employees.

“The average gender pay gap reflects the under-representation of women among the highest earners,” say the report’s authors. “They account for only 26.8% of the top 10% of earners in 2022, and 16.7% of the top 1%, compared with 35.8% in the private sector as a whole (excluding household staff).”

The pay gap between men and women in Monaco ranges from less than €50 for the lowest paid 60% of employees to up to €1,426 less in the highest paid positions.

On average, men are taking home €4,946 a month, compared to women’s €3,995 for the same work.

Source: IMSEE

How is the government addressing the pay gap?

It is an issue that was analysed by IMSEE in its first ever pay gap report in 2022, which was requested by the Committee for Women’s Rights and that measured both the public and private sectors, taking into account the anomaly of working hours.

“The gender pay gap is undeniable and the government has been working on the creation or adaptation of a tool that could be used in Monaco in order for the private sector to measure regularly the gender pay gaps in their own structure,” Céline Cottalorda, Interministerial Delegate for Women’s Rights, tells Monaco Life. “The purpose is that by making them aware of the existence of this pay gap, they will not be able to ignore it and will be held accountable to correct it. This work is taking time because of Monaco’s particularities regarding the private sector. No tool exists that corresponds to our needs so we are looking for a solution that would work for us.”

Since its creation in 2018, Monaco’s Committee for the Promotion and Protection of Women’s Rights has been campaigning for gender equality and it has been Cottalorda’s role as Chief Officer to implement recommendations and guidelines via partnerships with other institutions in the Principality.

“Finance and insurance sectors are traditionally dominated by men, so it is therefore more difficult for a woman to get into those sectors and succeed in them. But for years now, the Committee of Women’s Rights has been working on changing those stereotypes through campaigns and awareness actions,” says Cottalorda. “We are trying to deconstruct the stereotypes that the new generations could have towards traditionally masculine and feminine jobs and we are working with associations like AFCEM (Association des Femmes Chefs d’Entreprise) and SheCanHeCan to address as many young people as possible, especially girls. Each year, these associations organise a ‘speed mentoring’ session during which young women are invited to encounter women business leaders and exchange one-on-one with them.”

Pay increases also differ according to the genders

In the most unequal sectors, namely financial and insurance activities and wholesale trade, the gaps continue to widen, say the authors of the report. The salaries of the highest-paid men are growing faster than those of the highest-paid women.

Between 2021 and 2022, average male salaries rose by 19.8% in the financial and insurance activities, compared with just 5.6% for women, and by 24.8% in wholesale trade, compared with just 5.7% for women.

See also: Teen girls to receive ‘speed mentoring’ in Monaco on Women’s Rights Day

In accommodation and food service activities, information and communication, and industry, the gender pay gap is narrowing, with median and average salaries for women growing faster than those for men.

The gender pay gap is also narrowing in construction and real estate activities, but the reduction is marked by a greater increase in the average wages of men compared to women.

Consequences of the gender pay gap

IMSEE’s private sector salaries report and its analysis of the gender pay gap was released on 17th November, about a week before the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.

As Cottalorda explains, the impact of women earning less than men for the same work can extend far beyond the difference in a bank balance.

“Violence and discrimination against women take different forms and exist in all aspects of our lives,” says Cottalorda. “This discrimination (gender pay gap) is a symptom of violence against women: earning less can place them in a precarious situation of dependence on a partner; they are more likely to leave their job to take care of the home since they earn less than their partner, which can lead to economic and other forms of violence. In the case of domestic violence, it is rare that there is only one violence. Economic violence is the open door to other violence, which is why it is important not to minimise the impact of the gender pay gap over a woman’s life.”

Cottalorda reiterates that the government is working to develop a tool that will effectively measure the differences in salaries among men and women in Monaco, and which will eventually be used in the private sector to hold employees accountable and even-up the playing field.


Breakdown of Monaco’s private workforce shows average salary of €4,600 per month


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COP28: Monaco signs climate finance agreement with IFDD  

Against a backdrop of the ongoing COP28 climate talks, Monaco’s government has offered its support to the work of the Institut de la Francophonie pour le Développement Durable via a four-year financing accord. 

In an official communiqué released on 4th December, the Monegasque government, which is being represented at COP28 in Dubai by Isabelle Berro-Amadeï, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, announced that a finance-based agreement had been signed with the Institut de la Francophonie pour le Développement Durable (IFDD), or the Institute of La Francophonie for Sustainable Development in English.  

According to a government spokesperson, the agreement “aims to support and strengthen the capacities of French-speaking actors in mobilising international funding”. 

It will enter into force on 1st January 2024 and continue until 1st February 2028.  

The IFDD is a branch of the Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie (OIF) that represents the interests of countries and regions where French is the official or customary language, or where “a significant proportion of the population are francophones, or where there is a notable affiliation with French culture”.  

“The OIF, through its subsidiary body, the IFDD, would like to warmly thank the Government of Monaco for its contribution, which will help to develop and to promote a unique key instrument and facilitator for access to sustainable finance,” said a representative for the OIF following the signing.  

“Aware that this issue constitutes a major challenge for the full implementation of the Paris Agreement, the Principality of Monaco welcomes the extension of its partnership with the IFDD, with a view to supporting French-speaking stakeholders in their access to climate finance,” concluded a spokesperson for the Monegasque government.  


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Photo source: IFDD / Facebook

Sports round-up: Triumphs on the court, pitch and rings for Monaco

It was good news – and performances – all round for the Roca Team, AS Monaco and the national gymnastics team on the first weekend on the month, with victories and high scorecards raised consistently for the Principality’s athletes. 

Basketball: Roca Team overpowers Paris in a dominant victory 

In a remarkable basketball match on Sunday 3rd December, AS Monaco Basket emerged victorious over Paris with a notable final score of 84-62. The game was characterised by the Roca Team’s superior performance in several statistical categories. They led in total bounces, recording 39 against Paris’ 35, and demonstrated a stronger team play with 14 assists compared to eight for Paris. Defensively, Monaco also excelled with nine interceptions, easily outdoing Paris, who managed five. 

Mike James was the top performer for Monaco, contributing a significant 22 points to the team’s total score and earning an impressive evaluation score of 16. His performance was a major factor in Monaco’s triumph.

Jaron Blossomgame and Matthew Strazel also played pivotal roles, with their contributions on the court helping Monaco towards overall dominance in the game. 

The next home Betclic Elite game is scheduled for 17th December against Roanne. 

Football: AS Monaco clinches 2-0 victory over Montpellier HSC 

In a competitive Ligue 1 encounter at the Stade Louis II, also on Sunday 3rd December, AS Monaco secured a 2-0 win against Montpellier HSC. The match was a tactical battle, with Monaco displaying effective strategy and resilience.

Goals from Takumi Minamino and Wissam Ben Yedder were central to Monaco’s victory. Minamino opened the scoring, finding the net early in the game, while Ben Yedder sealed the win with a late goal. 

Takumi Minamino (left) helped AS Monaco on their way to the win with an early goal. Photo credit: AS Monaco Foot / Facebook

Montpellier HSC, known for their counter-attacking prowess, challenged Monaco throughout the match. However, Monaco’s defence, anchored by Guillermo Maripán, effectively neutralised these threats. This win is significant for AS Monaco as it reinforces their position in the upper ranks of Ligue 1 standings. 

The next home game is scheduled for 15th December against O. Lyonnais. 

Gymnastics: L’Étoile de Monaco shines at French Gymnastics Championships 

On Saturday 2nd December, L’Étoile de Monaco impressed at the French Gymnastics Championships with their agility and technical skill. Competing against Tremblay, Monaco’s gymnasts showcased their strength and grace, highlighting their rigorous training.  


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Photo credit: AS Monaco Basket / Facebook

Prince Rainier III remembered this December with more dedications and special events

As the final month of 2023 begins, the last in the centenary year of Prince Rainier III’s birth, the Principality is continuing to reflect on the impact the late Prince made as well as the legacy he left behind.  


On 6th December, the Oceanographic Museum will open a completely revamped space as a tribute to Prince Rainier and his lifelong commitment to ocean protection. It will showcase his actions both nationally, such as the creation of Monaco’s marine reserves, as well as internationally, including his fight to stop nuclear waste from being dumped into the Mediterranean Sea, the founding of the Pelagos Sanctuary and RAMOGE. 

The Prince and the Mediterranean will be part of the overall 700m2 ‘Monaco and the Ocean’ permanent exhibition room that offers visitors an “immersive and interactive journey” through the reigns of the Monegasque sovereigns Albert I, Rainer III and Albert II, and their separate efforts to protect the world’s oceans.  


On 7th December, the Christmas Village will open on Port Hercule with the theme for this year of Rainer III, Passionate Prince. This much-loved annual fun fair will feature plenty of different attractions and stands alongside music events and live entertainment. 

In line with the motif, there will be scenes decorated with photos of the Prince enjoying the things he loved most: motor sports, the arts, animals and the sea.  

See more: Dates announced for Monaco’s Prince Rainier III-themed Christmas Village


Two chances to view the film Rainier III par Lui-Même can be had on 7th December at 6.30pm at the Cinéma des Beaux-Arts and on 18th December at the Théâtre des Variétés at 8pm.   

Directed by Yann-Antony Noghès, and with the input of historians Thomas Fouilleron and Vincent Vatrican, the film gives exclusive insight into the inner workings of the Prince based on interviews and speeches given by Prince Rainier.  


From 15th December to the end of March 2024, the Museum of Prehistoric Anthropology will host the Un Prince, Un Musée (One Prince, One Museum) exhibit celebrating Prince Rainier’s vision for this important place, which was founded to preserve the country’s prehistorical treasures.  

In addition to the excavation sites, which are priceless, there will also be exhibits on the support he and Princess Grace gave to the museum through donations. 


Finally, on 20th December at 7.30pm, the Ballets de Monte-Carlo will perform two pieces that were particular favourites of Prince Rainier in his honour at the Grimaldi Forum’s fittingly named Salle des Princes.   

The first is La Valse by George Balanchine. Created in 1951 and first performed in Monaco in 1994, the Prince loved this ballet because of Ravel’s score. He was a huge fan of the composer, and he and Princess Grace had welcomed the famous Russian choreographer on several occasions, making this a rather personal work for him.  

The second is Jean-Christophe Maillot’s take on L’Enfant et les Sortilèges, which premiered in 1992. This too had a Ravel score and is filled with the magic of childhood. Maillot’s modern interpretation kept all the original charm of the piece, but made it relevant to contemporary audiences.  

For more information on each of these events, click here. 


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Photo credit: Manuel Vitali / Monaco Communications Department

Sorting of bio-waste will become mandatory in 2024 in France 

From 1st January, the recycling of organic waste will be obligatory in France. Here’s how the government says it will work.  

Cities like San Francisco have been doing it for a quarter of a century with impressive results, but in France, the idea of recycling organic waste is relatively new. The country’s bio-waste plans originated in 2015 and were furthered by the Anti-Waste Circular Economy Law, which was passed in February 2020. Things have been percolating ever since, and now a 1st January 2024 deadline for the obligatory sorting of bio-waste by households is looming.  

With that date is fast approaching, the government has published a set of guidelines to help the public follow the new rules, but there are still valid questions on how and when compliance will realistically be possible.  


Bio-waste is a rather narrow category that includes food and catering waste, like leftover meals, vegetable peelings and expired food products, as well as garden waste, such as grass clippings, dead leaves and twigs from pruning.  

Traditionally, most of these items have disappeared into general household waste bins destined for rubbish heaps or incinerators. As of 1st January 2024, however, French households will be legally obliged to separate these compostable organic materials, which account for roughly a third of the annual waste produced in the home, as part of a larger EU-wide plan concerning garbage. 

See more: Composting revolution coming to France in 2024

The programme is targeted at not only individuals, but also at administrations, businesses and communities, and is being partially funded by a green fund set aside for this purpose.  


Municipalities are being given relatively free reign on how to implement the new rules. Some are choosing to distribute small counter-top bins that can be left outside the home for a dedicated collection service to pick up while others are installing municipal collection points, like those already available across much of the country for glass, plastic and paper waste.  

Whatever the method of collection, the bio-waste recuperated will then be processed and turned into compost to be used for other purposes.  

To lessen the burden on towns and cities, the government is also encouraging home composting as an alternative for those who have the type of property where this is possible. 


The plan is certainly a noble one that makes an enormous amount of sense when it comes to reducing waste, but are communities ready for such changes, despite having a long lead time to prepare?  

The short answer is no. Many municipalities have not put the basics in place, nor have they put aside funding to make it happen by the deadline. The additional costs are estimated to come in at somewhere between €8 and €15 per person each year for the necessary facilities to be created and maintained; too much money for some and too much effort for others.  

According to comments by Alexandra Gentric, National Coordinator for Biowaste Management at ADEME, France’s Environment and Energy Management Agency, to in September, “Things are moving, with lots of projects being set up, but we are far from ready. At the last count, it is estimated that only a quarter of the French population will have a solution deployed by a community [by the deadline], if individual composting is not an option.” 

The bottom line is that, as the clock ticks ever closer to the New Year’s goal, many places will not or cannot comply. As of now, no fines will be imposed on those not following the rules, but this may change in the future if towns and cities continue to drag their heels. 

Click here for more information.


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Photo source: Markus Spiske, Unsplash

Christmas in Monaco: SBM’s top patisserie chefs come together to create festive treats

festive treats SBM

You don’t need to be a patisserie pro to appreciate the beauty of the festive treats being made to order by Société des Bains de Mer’s chefs this Christmas… Here’s everything you need to know about the delectable range, from how to order to where to collect.  

For this holiday season, top patisserie chefs from across the Société des Bains de Mer (SBM) portfolio have crafted a sumptuous selection of sweet and savoury delights for the public to admire and enjoy.  

Artistic chocolate creations and classic holiday treats 

The range is the product of a collaboration between chefs Ken Thomas, Cédric Campanella, Cédric Bernard and Thierry Saez Manzanares, and offers an array of gourmet options that includes masterful chocolate sculptures featuring Rudolph, snowmen and Father Christmas.  

Prices are from €15 for a chocolate reindeer lollipop to €85 for an intricately designed sleigh, ensuring there’s something for every taste and budget. 

For those seeking more traditional holiday treats, the SBM patisserie service also offers entremets like the award-winning ‘Blanc Manteau’ and a festive ‘Bûche Magie de Noel’, each serving six to eight portions.  

The collection includes classic items like the ‘Traditionnel Kouglof’, Panettone and galettes alongside unique creations like the magnificent ‘Bûche Traineau’ and ‘Bûche Bougie’. 

The ‘Bûche Bougie’ from the 2023 Christmas collection. Photo credit: Monte-Carlo Société des Bains de Mer

Add to this a personalised hamper service, which includes treats such as smoked salmon, foie gras, Yule logs and gourmet chocolates, and SBM really has its customers covered this year.  

Orders can be placed for these exquisite creations at two locations: the Chalet Monte-Carlo Catering on Avenue de Monte-Carlo (+377 98 06 60 27) and Mada One (+377 98 06 68 68), which is open daily from 8.30am to 6pm.  

The “made to order” service started back in November and will continue until Saturday 6th January. 


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Photo credit: Monte-Carlo Société des Bains de Mer