According to state data agency Statistics Estonia, the average monthly gross wages and salaries in Estonia in 2020 were EUR 1,448, up by 2.9% YoY. Trade, accommodation, catering and arts and entertainment however saw a decline in average wages during the corona-riddled year.
The nearly 3% increase is the first time in ten years the increase has been so modest. Since 2011, the annual growth rate has steadily been over 5% and has even risen above 7% in several years, Statistics Estonia reported on March 3.
The average monthly gross wages and salaries were the highest in Harju county (EUR 1,588) and Tartu county (EUR 1,447) and the lowest in Hiiu county (EUR 1,063) and Valga county (EUR 1,106).
Compared to 2019, the average gross wages and salaries increased the most in Laane-Viru, Polva and Jarva counties, while the biggest decrease was recorded in Laane and Parnu counties.
Karina Valma, leading analyst at Statistics Estonia, said that wages and salaries rose in most economic activities despite the difficult year.
“The increase in average monthly gross wages and salaries was the biggest in information and communication (9.9%) and in professional, scientific and technical activities (8%). There were three economic activities where average wages did still decline: most sharply in trade (9.7%) and also in accommodation and food services (4.9%) and in arts and entertainment (2.2%),” Valma said.
The average wages and salaries were again the highest in information and communication (EUR 2,574), in financial and insurance activities (EUR 2,461) and in energy (EUR 2,118). The economic activities with the lowest average wages were real estate activities (EUR 1,050) and accommodation and food service activities (EUR 860).
In the public sector, the average monthly gross wages and salaries rose by 2.5% in 2020 and reached EUR 1,563. The corresponding increase in the private sector was 2.2%, with average wages amounting to EUR 1,399 in 2020.
In the fourth quarter of 2020, the average monthly gross wages and salaries were EUR 1,515, 2.9% higher than in the same quarter in 2019. (ERR/Business World Magazine)