A spokeswoman for one of Scotland's leading networks for women in business has said that post-independence moves towards boosting female membership of private and public-sector boards to 40% might provide a competitive advantage for Scottish business.

Alison Henderson, vice-chair of the Association of Scottish Businesswomen said that while the organisation had not reached a common position on the desirability of imposed quotas for female board members, she believed that new rules would be positive for Scotland.

Henderson said: "Some of the Scandinavian countries that have moved towards having quotas or aiming to get more women on boards have brought out figures that show it has had a positive benefit.

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"I don't see why that wouldn't make Scotland stand out, and we might see that it had a positive effect on the economy. It could be a point of competitive advantage with the rest of the UK."

Last week, the Scottish Government announced "the first-ever all-women Cabinet event" on June 9, marking 100 days until the referendum.

The event is intended to "bring together women from organisations across Scotland to discuss all of the issues of importance in the referendum. It will explore the opportunities to promote and improve gender equality with independence. Issues such as female representation on boards, the improvement of childcare and employment law will be on the agenda".

Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: "The Scottish Government is proud to have taken action on gender equality. The Scottish female employment rate is now the highest of any UK nation, and the inactivity rate is the lowest. The Scottish Government also wants to see women make up at least 40% of public and private boards."