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.

Average monthly gross wages and salaries 1,548 euros
6.9%
2021
Average hourly gross wages 9.5 euros
6.1%
2022 Q1
Average monthly labour cost per employee 2,139 euros
9.1%
2022 Q1
14.9 %
2021
Number of occupied posts 603,509
1.4%
2021 IV KVARTAL
Number of job vacancies 11,103
27.5%
2021 IV KVARTAL
Average monthly gross wages | 1st quarter 2018 – 1st quarter 2022
Unit: euros
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 3rd quarter 2021 4th quarter 2021 1st quarter 2022
Total - all activities 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 1,553 1,625 1,593

Average hourly gross wages | 1st quarter 2018 – 1st quarter 2022
Unit: euros
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 3rd quarter 2021 4th quarter 2021 1st quarter 2022
Total - all activities 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 8.8 9.1 9.5

Average monthly labour cost per employee | 1st quarter 2018 – 1st quarter 2022
Unit: euros
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 3rd quarter 2021 4th quarter 2021 1st quarter 2022
Total - all activities 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 2,078 2,179 2,139

News

Gender pay gap was the smallest on record

According to Statistics Estonia, in 2021, the gross hourly earnings of female employees were 14.9% smaller than the earnings of male employees. The gender pay gap decreased by 0.7 percentage points year on year.
Read more 21. April 2022