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Dubbed ‘World’s most powerful women’, is Angela Merkel a role model for German women?

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Angela Merkel may be Germany’s first female chancellor, but her gender is not something she has ever put forward, in either fashion or policy: the pantsuit-wearing leader has avoided describing herself as a feminist throughout most of her public life. As she prepares to leave the country’s power, her efforts to improve the situation of women have largely been slow in coming.

Conservative Chancellor Angela Merkel has been called “World’s most powerful woman” and a model for many in Germany.

Even for young women in Prenzlauer Berg, a trendy Berlin neighborhood whose voters lean left, and who grew up with Merkel leading the country, she nevertheless broke the glass ceiling.

“She’s a strong, in-charge woman, who faced a lot of challenges,” one told our correspondent Nick Spicer. “The mere fact that she became Chancellor has shown us what we can do as women,” another one added

But as Merkel is about to leave the country’s power for the first time since 2005, has she defended the cause of women?

More German women are working, but there’s still in 18% pay gap with men, overall. It was only in 2020 that she accepted the idea of imposing a quota for company boards in big companies.

A mixed record, according to the federation of women entrepreneurs.

Click on the player above to watch out correspondent Nick Spicer’s special report from Berlin.

>> As Germany’s general elections near, things are going wrong for the right

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The Groucho

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