“The minimum wage in Estonia has generally grown faster than the average wage and inflation. Also, there are only a few percent of minimum wage earners on the labor market, and this does not characterize the wage levels in Estonia as a whole,» said Aas.
How many people would have their wages increased by the directive?
Therefore, would the wage of only a few thousand people affect the functioning of the entire Estonian state? According to Kadri Rootalu, a data scientist at the Statistics Estonia, a very large number of employees were excluded from the latest wage statistics. Otherwise, there have always been well over 600,000 employees in Estonia, but this time employees with commission and other contracts, part-time employees and the personnel of the police and the Ministry of Defense had to be excluded from the statistics, explained Rootalu. Thus, according to the data of the second quarter of this year, the workforce decreased to 461,700 people.
The picture becomes interesting when looking at how many people earned up to one thousand euros gross per month – they amount to 18 percent of wage earners, or 83,300.
A gross salary of one thousand euros means that a person receives 871 euros on payday. If one has to rent an apartment, pay utility bills, buy food and raise children for this amount in Tallinn, then the sum no longer seems compatible with the vision of the Confederation of Trade Unions as a salary with which a person can go to the theater and cinema and save up to six months' salary.