BEIJING, March 7 (Xinhua) -- Chinese women are still earning lower wages than men, but the gender wage gap is narrowing as more women are taking up more management roles, a new survey has found.
In 2019, the average wage for Chinese urban men was 22.5 percent higher than women's, down from 27.7 percent a year ago, the first decrease in three years, said a report by Zhipin.com, a recruitment website.
Chinese urban women earned an average of 6,995 yuan (about 1,009 U.S. dollars) monthly last year, up 7.7 percent year on year, equivalent to 81.6 percent of what men earned, according to the report's calculation.
The report attributed the narrowing pay difference to the fact that more women are moving into management as a result of stronger work capabilities and desire to advance professionally, though their share is still far smaller than men's.
In 2019, 25.4 percent of executive-level positions in Chinese enterprises were taken by women, up 0.4 percentage points from the 2018 level. Notably, 51.8 percent of human resources executives were women, 1.1 percentage points higher than a year ago.
Women's participation in core businesses such as those concerning technologies, products and sales has improved as well, the report said. For instance, the share of women executives in charge of sales has gone up by 0.44 percentage points.
There has also been an increase in the number of women taking up higher-skilled positions that offer larger paychecks, as more of them have majored in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, said the report.
Though less than 30 percent of the 15 highest-paying technological jobs were occupied by women last year, about 60 percent of these occupations have seen a larger presence of women, it said.
Education plays a significantly positive role in women's wage level, the report has found. For each extra year of education, women in China receive a boost in average wages of 5.1 percent, 0.5 percentage points higher than that for men.
Women employees accounted for 43.7 percent of the total employees in 2018, up 0.2 percentage points from the previous year. Meanwhile, women accounted for 49.6 percent of graduate students and 52.5 percent of full-time college students, official data showed.