According to Statistics Estonia, the average gross monthly wage in the first quarter of 2023 was €1,741, which is 13.3% higher than at the same time the year before; the median wage, however, was €1,424.
Since the first quarter of 2023, Statistics Estonia has been using the data from the employment register of the the country’s Tax and Customs Board and the income and social tax declarations to publish the average wage. The change in methodology now allows for the publication of median wage figures alongside the average wage.
By economic activity, the average monthly gross wage in the first quarter was highest in information and communication (€3,160), financial and insurance activities (€2,952) and energy (€2,435).
“They were lowest in accommodation and food service (€1,124), other service activities (€1,142) and real estate (€1,209),” Argo Tarkiainen, an analyst at Statistics Estonia, the country’s official statistics agency, said in a statement.
Harju and Tartu counties have the highest wages
He added that average wage increased the most in education (19.8%) and accommodation and food service activities (17.3%).
The average monthly gross wage continued to be the highest in Harju (€1,975) and Tartu counties (€1,730) and the lowest in Saare (€1,316) and Valga counties (€1,261). Year on year, the biggest growth in wage was recorded in Valga (16.3%) and Tartu counties (14.1%).
The median wage, ie the point at which half of employees earn more and half earn less, was the highest in the first quarter of 2023 in information and communication (€2,661), financial and insurance activities (€2,395) and in public administration and defence (€2,100). The median wage was the lowest in accommodation and food service activities (€984), other service activities (€892) and real estate activities (€813).
Real wages, which take inflation into account and reflect people’s actual purchasing power, were €1,443 in the first quarter of this year, 3.2% lower than a year ago.