Employers reject minimum pay increase

  • 2011-06-29
  • From wire reports

TALLINN - An income survey by the Confederation of Employers demonstrated that wages have grown more among highly qualified workers while the increase has been smaller among regular workers and specialists, reports Aripaev. The study revealed that the wages of shop assistants and cashiers, as well as regular workers in production enterprises, stayed below the average gross pay in the first quarter in Estonia – i.e. below 792.34 euros; these two categories earned less than 600 euros per month. Workers in storage enterprises earned a little more than 600 euros, customer service personnel a little more than 700 euros.

According to the survey, the highest-earning category of employees are in computer maintenance, earning nearly 1,200 euros; accountancy employees earn a little more than 1,000 euros per month.
The head of the Confederation of Employers, Tarmo Kriis, stated that wage pressure has been growing lately. “However, I do not see the private sector starting to increase wages now,” he said, adding that theoretically, these discussions might start at the beginning of next year. “The public sector should definitely not start raising wages,” he estimated.

The employers’ organization also does not support the idea to raise minimum pay. “The minimum pay is currently at the same level as it was in 2008 and we are certainly not planning to raise it this year,” said Kriis. According to him, the situation prior to the economic crisis, when the increase in minimum pay was linked to the increase in average pay, was a mistake.