Trade Union Boss: Low-Wage Industry Should be Scrapped ({{commentsTotal}})

Ericsson's factory in Tallinn is playing a major part in Estonia's exports. Source: (Postimees/Scanpix)

If Estonia is to catch up with the rest of Europe, wages must grow by 6 percent a year for the next quarter of a century and low-wage sectors must be abandoned, says Peep Peterson, the head of the Trade Union Confederation.

Speaking on ETV's “Terevisioon” today, the head of the Employers' Confederation, Toomas Tamsar, said that Estonia leads the EU in the lack of qualified employees, and it is a unavoidable problem.

Tamsar said that unemployment and labor shortages go hand-in-hand in Estonia, and both prevail in lower wage sectors. He said that the salaries that can be paid by manufactures and other companies is not enough to entice the unemployed to work.

Peterson said that many companies are run as they were in 1994, adding that they should seek to export low-level jobs.

“We should get accustomed to the idea that Estonia is not a cheap labor country,” he said.

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