Czechs are the new rich kids on the East Block

1. 10. 2007 6:00
Hourly wage nearly four euros; only Slovenes earn more
Poor relatives? Who are you talking about?
Poor relatives? Who are you talking about? | Foto: Ondřej Besperát

Prague - With the average hourly wage of 109 Czech Crowns (just short of four euros), Czechs are the second highest paid among the EU expansion pack of 2004.

Out of the ten countries, mostly from the former East European socialist camp, only Slovenes earn more.

As numbers collected from across the 27-member block and published recently by the Czech Statistical Office (ČSÚ) show, the Czech Republic is still lagging behind the Western Europe in terms of salaries.

The pay gap is steadily closing though, thanks mainly to the nominal wage increase and strong local currency.

Workforce shortage in construction sector

According to the statisticians, Czech economy continues to be defined by high employment rate in its secondary sector, i.e. industry and construction sector.

The latter has even run into a qualified workforce shortage in the last couple of months which has pushed the level of salaries further up. That, combined with the continuously rising prices of building material, makes the whole enterprise more expensive.

Looks like the average fifteen minute wage
Looks like the average fifteen minute wage | Foto: Evropská komise

The average Czech monthly salary climbed over 20 thousand Czech Crowns last year.

Statistics also show that Czechs typically prefer to have the security guaranteed by a regular full-time employee status. Out of the EU-25 group (the old member states plus the expansion batch of 2004) only two other countries had a higher percentage of those contracts.

Women get 25 per cent less

The pay gap between men and women remains unchanged in the Czech Republic. On the average, female employees get 75 percent of what their male colleagues earn.

As far as unemployment rate is concerned, the Czech Republic is not doing bad with only 7,1 per cent of its working-age population seeking jobs.

While that figure belongs among the lowest across the EU, the problem of the long-term unemployment rate, which is much higher here than elsewhere in Europe, has not been properly addressed in the Czech Republic, statistics show.

Another little surprising fact is that Prague is leading the list of highest paying regions and the most lucrative sector is that of financial services.


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