Parts: Estonia No Longer a Cheap Labor Country (3)
Discussing the country's next seven-year business strategy, Minister of Economic Affairs Juhan Parts said Estonia can no longer be framed as a destination for companies in search of cheap labor.
"Today it is important, and this is our talking point in nearly every meeting, that Estonia is no longer a country with a cheap workforce. For that reason productivity is of primary importance in the new strategy," Parts told Postimees.
"Regarding foreign investment or companies' investments, while the average gross salary today is about 1,000 euros, then the 2020 business plan budgets 2,000 euros and more. By sector and in some niche areas we can speak of other figures, but our message to all investors is that 2,000 euros plus is the level they need to take into account in investing," Parts said.
Although there has recently been concern that Estonian salaries are growing too rapidly, other experts have pointed out that Estonia is still the poorest country in the Eurozone and, according to economic expert Andres Arrak, the average Estonian family has about 10 times less wealth than the average Swedish family.