The Government is being urged to take fresh action to close the gender pay gap after an inquiry found evidence of “obscene” wage differences of more than 40%. The Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee took evidence from a number of firms and campaign groups during and discovered that the UK has one of the highest gaps in Europe. Median pay is 18% in favour of men, but gaps of over 40% are not uncommon, while almost one in eight employers have gaps of more than 30%. The recent move to require firms to publish gender pay details had “shone a spotlight” on the issue and helped women raise any disparities, said the committee. It recommended increasing the number of organisations required to publish pay gap data to those with 50 employees, from the current 250. The MPs also called for publication of annual progress reports, including plans to tackle any wage gaps. Committee chair Rachel Reeves said the biggest gender pay gaps were “obscene and entirely unacceptable”. The gender pay gap must be closed, not only in the interests of fairness and promoting diversity at the highest levels of our business community, but also to improve the country’s economic performance and end a monstrous injustice.