Top state officials' monthly pay to see unprecedented rise from April 2023

Opening sitting of the Riigikogu's autumn session on September 12, 2022.
Opening sitting of the Riigikogu's autumn session on September 12, 2022. Source: Siim Lõvi /ERR

Top state officials, including the president, prime minister and Riigikogu speaker, as well as MPs, judges and others, will see a monthly pay-check boost in April 2023 that is more than double the increase a year earlier.

Wages and salaries in Estonia are generally quoted per month rather than per annum.

Whereas in 2022 the average wage paid to senior civil servants increased by 7.9 percent on year, for 2023, the rise may be significantly more.

While the precise figures are not yet clear, estimates are possible, ERR reports.

Between January and August this year, the pension insurance component of social tax took in €1.64 billion, a 12.7 percent rise on the same period in 2021 – according to Tax and Customs Board (MTA) data.

Inflation as referred to by the Ministry of Finance's summer economic forecast was put at 19.5 percent.

The relevant legislation, the Civil Service Act, requires salaries of senior civil servants to increase from April each year according to growth on the pension insurance part of the social tax on year, i.e. salary growth, which makes up 80 percent of the rise, and is also indexed to inflation, which makes up the remaining 20 percent of the pay increase.

In other words, top civil servants are likely to see a pay-rise in double-figures and not single-figures for 2023, estimated by ERR at 14.06 percent for top employees. 

The top salary bracket for senior civil servants this year stands at €7,303.06.

The development comes against the backdrop of an inflation rate of close to 25 percent in August, rising private sector wages and threats of public sector teachers' strikes.

However, state pensions are also set to rise next year, both due to indexation and to an extra pensions hike of €20, giving an average increase nationwide from €595 to €700 per month, an 18-percent rise, one which is in fact higher than that of senior civil servants' pay.

Estimated top officials pay-rises for 2023:

  • President Alar Karis, Prime Minister Kaja Kallas (Reform), Riigikogu Speaker Jüri Ratas (Center) and Supreme Court Chief Justice Villu Kõve can expect a rise from €7,303 to €8,303 per month, gross, an increase of €1,000, compared with the €500-per-month increase between 2021 and 2022.
  • Tallinn Mayor Mihhail Kõlvart (Center) and Tallinn Council Chair Jevgeni Ossinovski (SDE) can expect a pay-rise of a little over €1,000 per month, to €8,238 per month gross (Tallinn officials' pay is also indexed in the same way as state civil servants' wages are – see above).
  • An increase of €873 per month (again, double the rise from the previous year) to €7,080 can be expected by the Riigikogu's two deputy speakers Helir-Valdor Seeder (Isamaa) and Martin Helme (EKRE), Auditor General Janar Holm, Chancellor of Justice Ülle Madise, members of the Supreme Court bench, State Prosecutor Andres Parmas, all 15 government ministers, State Secretary Taimar Peterkop, the five Riigikogu party whips, and the chairs of all Riigikogu committees.
  • Ministerial secretaries general can expect a rise of €786 per month, to €6,372 per month – the heads of ministries are paid 90 percent the rate that their political bosses, the ministers, get.
  • Riigikogu committee vice-chairs and the deputy chief whips of the five represented parties will likely see their monthly gross pay rise by €770, to €6,247. The same applies to circuit court judges.
  • Ordinary MPs, county court and administrative court judges will get €667 per month more in 2023, at €5,414 gross.
  • The national conciliator and the gender equality commissioner will see their wage rise €565, to €4,581 per month.

The top pay rates' indexes are calculated by March 15 each year, with a view to the salary increase kicking-in the following month.

The Ministry of Finance calculates this indexing.


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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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