Estonia now second last in gender pay gap in EU, ahead of Latvia

Flag of the European Union and related institutions next to the Estonian flag.
Flag of the European Union and related institutions next to the Estonian flag. Source: ERR

Estonia no longer has the largest gender wage gap in the European Union, having been surpassed by neighboring Latvia, according to figures recently released by the European Commission.

In a report published on European equal pay day today, November 15, the European Commission says that the average per-hour wage for Estonian women is 21.1 percent lower than that of men (all figures to 2020).

The EU average pay gap was 13 percent in 2020, while only Latvia (22.3 percent) has a larger pay gap by gender, the report says.

Across the EU, on average a woman would have to work 1.5 more months than a man to earn the same salary or, for every full euro a man earns, a woman earns 87 cents.

The gender pay gap has nonetheless fallen over the last decade or so – in 2010 it stood at 15.8 percent on average for the union.

In Estonia the figure was 26.6 percent in 2010, rising to 29.9 percent by 2013, followed by a trend for a closing of the gap, to 21.7 percent in 2019 and 21.1 percent at present (2020 figures).

Latvia's gender pay gap has actually risen recently, from 21.2 percent in 2019 to 22.3 percent as noted in 2020.

While no country had an inverse pay gap where men were being paid less than women on average, Luxembourg came closest to parity, with a 0.7-percent gap.

In Sweden, the figure was 11.2 percent, in Lithuania, 13.0 percent and in Finland, 16.7 percent.

The commission's press center has more information here.


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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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