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Wages and salaries and labour costs

For work, people receive pay, or wages and salaries, which is agreed compensation for fulfilling work tasks. In addition to the sum that the employer pays to the employee, the employer pays labour taxes on that sum, which together with the wages constitute labour costs.

Wages are an important source of income, and their main purpose is to cover expenses on dwelling, food, transportation and other basic needs. This is why the law regulates the minimum an employee could be paid for full-time work. The minimum wage is set to protect the well-being of employees.

The statistics on wages and salaries and labour costs provide the following information:

  • what are the average monthly and hourly gross wages in different economic activities;
  • how much the wages differ in counties;
  • whether jobs with higher pay are in the private or public sector;
  • what are hourly wages of employees by occupation, economic activity, level of education, age group, length of employment or type of contract;
  • what are the components of employers’ costs on employees and what is the share of each of these in the total costs;
  • how many vacant posts there are in Estonia, and how many people have changed jobs;
  • how many labour strikes have taken place in Estonia, how long these lasted, and how many people participated;
  • how wide is the gender pay gap in different economic activities.

Statistics on wages and salaries are used to measure labour productivity, observe trends, assess changes in the labour market and make decisions on the national economy.

1,538 euros
7.3%
2ND QUARTER 2021
Average monthly gross wages and salaries 1,448 euros
2.9%
2020
Average hourly gross wages 9.1 euros
4.4%
2ND QUARTER 2021
Average monthly labour cost per employee 2,033 euros
12.0%
2ND QUARTER 2021
15.6 %
2020
Number of occupied posts 607,772
1.3%
2ND QUARTER 2021
Number of job vacancies 10,542
30.3%
2ND QUARTER 2021
Average monthly gross wages | 2nd quarter 2017 – 2nd quarter 2021
Unit: euros
2nd quarter 2017 3rd quarter 2017 4th quarter 2017 1st quarter 2018 2nd quarter 2018 3rd quarter 2018 4th quarter 2018 1st quarter 2019 2nd quarter 2019 3rd quarter 2019 4th quarter 2019 1st quarter 2020 2nd quarter 2020 3rd quarter 2020 4th quarter 2020 1st quarter 2021 2nd quarter 2021
Total - all NACE activities 1,242 1,201 1,271 1,242 1,321 1,291 1,384 1,341 1,419 1,397 1,472 1,404 1,433 1,441 1,515 1,473 1,538

Average hourly gross wages | 2nd quarter 2017 – 2nd quarter 2021
Unit: euros
2nd quarter 2017 3rd quarter 2017 4th quarter 2017 1st quarter 2018 2nd quarter 2018 3rd quarter 2018 4th quarter 2018 1st quarter 2019 2nd quarter 2019 3rd quarter 2019 4th quarter 2019 1st quarter 2020 2nd quarter 2020 3rd quarter 2020 4th quarter 2020 1st quarter 2021 2nd quarter 2021
Total - all NACE activities 7.5 7.2 7.7 7.4 7.5 7.5 7.9 7.9 8.2 8.0 8.4 8.4 8.7 8.3 8.7 9.0 9.1

Average monthly labour cost per employee | 2nd quarter 2017 – 2nd quarter 2021
2nd quarter 2017 3rd quarter 2017 4th quarter 2017 1st quarter 2018 2nd quarter 2018 3rd quarter 2018 4th quarter 2018 1st quarter 2019 2nd quarter 2019 3rd quarter 2019 4th quarter 2019 1st quarter 2020 2nd quarter 2020 3rd quarter 2020 4th quarter 2020 1st quarter 2021 2nd quarter 2021
Total - all NACE activities 1,673 1,618 1,716 1,667 1,771 1,733 1,855 1,798 1,900 1,870 1,974 1,876 1,815 1,933 2,032 1,960 2,033

News

Gender-based information and earnings projections added to Statistics Estonia’s application

The earnings application, first published more than a year ago, was upgraded by Statistics Estonia together with the Commissioner for Equal Opportunities, University of Tartu, Tallinn University of Technology and the Social Insurance Board. More occupational groups, comparison of males’ and females’ monthly earnings, and earnings and pension projections were added to the application.
Read more 30. August 2021