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Study: wages in Latvia grew more rapidly in 2017 than they did in previous years

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUAs a result of economic growth and increasing labour force demand, remuneration level in Latvia in 2017 has reached the most rapid rate in the past several years. Average net wage in Latvia has increased by 6%, reaching EUR 894, according to results of a study performed by CV-Online Latvia.

Average monthly net wages remain the highest for workers of the business sector, IT sector, finances, telecommunications, chemical industry and pharmaceutical good production. Average wages of people working in those sectors had exceeded the EUR 1,000 range last year. The lowest average wages – EUR 700 – were paid to workers of education, culture and healthcare sectors, as concluded in the study.

Results also confirm existing differences among Latvia’s largest cities and regions. People employed in Riga were paid wages around EUR 968 on average. In Pieriga and Jurmala, on the other hand, average wages were around EUR 897. The lowest average wages are found in Daugavpils (EUR 619). In Latgale in general wages stay around EUR 593.

«Because the unemployment situation differs from region to region and city to city, average wages are usually 40% higher than wages in other Latvian cities and regions. This trend has remained unchanged for years. Because of that, residents are motivated to travel to Riga in hopes of getting larger wages. Employers have taken notice of this, especially food retailers with many vacant jobs in Riga,» says CV-Online Latvia manager Aivis Brodiņš.

Analysis of income differences between genders shows that average wage of men in Latvia is EU 1,021, whereas women earn 27% less on average – EUR 806.

CV-Online Latvia manager Aivis Brodiņš says this can be explained with the fact that women most often take jobs in which wages are usually lower. This includes jobs in catering, accommodation, health and social care institutions. A comparison of average wages of men and women in medium and high-rank posts shows that percentage-wise differences are much smaller – women are usually paid 14% less than men.

«Rapid wage climb in a tense labour market situation is typical for all three Baltic States. Wage rise is expected in the majority of industries, but rates may vary. Slower rise or even decline is expected in finance sector. The transit industry is also in a tough spot. No major changes are expected for the real estate industry. Controversial situation is noted for members of society expected to have a minimal increase of wages. Because of that, the emigration rates will remain constant,» SEB Bank’s macroeconomic expert Dainis Gašpuitis comments the situation. «It is expected average gross wage may reach EUR 1,000 in the middle of the year. However, to receive EUR 1,000 on hands, people will have to wait 2-3 years. Wage rise in regions will be quite fast. Nevertheless, differences between regions and Riga will continue increasing. This year’s wage rise is expected to be around 8.2%.»

LMT vice-president Laura Keršule says: «Considering that the situation in the labour market has changed considerably when compared to what was observed ten to fifteen years ago, it is necessary to search for new ways of attracting workers. Previously businesses have had wage systems and all posts were evaluated based on added value methodology and divided into groups with specific remuneration borders. The average wage level in the labour market is considered self-explanatory for people without sufficient competence to perform their duties. Specialists with the necessary competence dictate different rules, because they understand very well that they will not stay without work for long. Competitive wages, a good work environment, growth opportunities and company reputation are very important for people.»


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