Reports are emerging that Volkswagen will be introducing the newest member of their board who apparently, will be a Qatari woman. There are many reasons for this and it is excellent for progression but; it is very surprising that Qatar is pushing for this considering their record in the treatment of women.
This move however seems to benefit both Volkswagen and Qatar, who is the third largest stakeholder in the German automotive company. Since January of this year, there was new legislation passed in Germany which enforced a rule that at least 30 percent of the board in all major companies must be held by women. So therefore, it is Qatar who is putting forward a woman to represent the percentage needed for the Volkswagen board legally.
This has all come at a time when the Chief Financial Officer Hans Dieter Potsch is supposedly moving up to the supervisory board level. Therefore, Qatar has sorted out a huge problem for the German automotive outfit. Qatar holds two seats on the executive board as a result of the stake that they have. Therefore, the mystery Qatari woman will be replacing the outgoing current board member Hussain Ali Al-Abdulla, who is the vice chairman of Qatar Holding LLC and has been sitting on the VW supervisory board since 2010.
There are concerns that arise from this decision however. Firstly, with the treatment of women in Qatar, why has the Emirate decided to allow one mystery woman to sit on the executive board of one of the biggest brands in the world? It really begs questions of what is going on. Secondly, why are there reshuffles and promotions and multiple changes happening after the emissions scandal? Surely, there should be more accountability occurring during this period of time. It may just be the crazy world of business…