Legalisation of same-sex marriage will inevitably spread across Asia-Pacific, say nearly half of respondents in new Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) survey

May 30, 2019 - 11:44
Legalisation of same-sex marriage will inevitably spread across Asia-Pacific, say nearly half of respondents in new Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) survey
  • 45% of respondents agree that Asia-Pacific will eventuallyembrace marriage equality, versus 31% who disagree
  • Three in four respondents believe the overallclimate for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights in Asia-Pacificis more open now than three years ago
  • Yet companies need to do more to protect LGBT staffin countries lagging behind on LGBT rights, executives say


HONG KONG, CHINA - Media OutReach - 29 May 2019 - With Taiwan becomingthe first Asian jurisdiction to legalise same-sex marriage this month, newresearch by The EIU shows that the march of LGBT equality is likely to continue.The report, Pride and Prejudice: Assessing Progress in Asia-Pacific, supported byBarclays, is based on a survey of 1,901 people around the world, including 339from 21 Asian countries or territories. It includes sentiment surrounding LGBTrights in both broader society and the business community.


While progress in Asian companies may not be as rapid as in the Westernworld, positive changes are occurring. Compared with results from similar surveysconducted in 2015 and 2016, the share of Asia-Pacific executives who believethere are prominent LGBT advocates in their companies increased by sixpercentage points. Those who believe there is a return on investment (ROI) toLGBT-progress-raising measures grew by ten percentage points. And those whowould like their firms to increase funding for LGBT diversity and inclusion shotup by 11 percentage points.



There are prominent LGBT advocates in my company (2015 v 2019)

There is a potential ROI/business opportunity in enacting LGBT-friendly workplace policies and practices (2016 v 2019)

I would like to see my company investing more in advancing progress in sexual orientation and gender identity diversity in the workplace (2015 v 2019)

2015 or 2016









In broader society, the prospect of same-sex marriage taking hold inAsia-Pacific is growing alongside deeper acceptance of LGBT people. Among thosewho believe the overall climate for LGBT rights in their country over the pastthree years has become more open, the top reason cited was change in policiesand laws relating to LGBT people (38%), followed by coverage of LGBT issues in mainstreammedia (36%). Yet significant hurdles remain: the top reason cited by those whobelieve the climate for LGBT people in Asia-Pacific has become less open overthe past three years was anti-LGBT advocacy by religious institutions,highlighting the need for greater appreciation of individual civil libertiesamong Asian social institutions.


Michael Gold, editor of the research, said: "These findings reinforceAsia's forward momentum on LGBT rights in light of Taiwan's historic legalisationof marriage equality. More action needs to be taken to move the needle for LGBTpeople in countries across the continent. Businesses have a crucial role toplay, alongside governments, courts, civil society and the general public."

About the research

Pride and Prejudice: Assessing Progress in Asia-Pacific is based on the fourth year of a global survey ofattitudes surrounding LGBT rights. The panel consists of regular Economist readers who agree toparticipate in research panels; non-executives were included in order to presenta broader swath of views. Only full-time employees answered questions relatingto corporate diversity; all respondents answered questions relating to LGBTrights in broader society. Visit the Pride andPrejudice website for the full report and jointhe discussion at #EconPride.

About The Economist Intelligence Unit

The EIU is the thought leadership,research and analysis division of The Economist Group and the world leader inglobal business intelligence for executives. We uncover novel andforward-looking perspectives with access to over 650 expert analysts andeditors across 200 countries worldwide. More information can be found on us on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook.

About Barclays

Barclays is a transatlantic consumer and wholesale bank offering productsand services across personal, corporate and investment banking, credit cardsand wealth management, with a strong presence in our two home markets of the UKand the US.


With over 325 years of history and expertise in banking, Barclays operatesin over 40 countries and employs approximately 83,500 people. Barclays moves,lends, invests and protects money for customers and clients worldwide.


For further information about Barclays, please visit our website