Statutory minimum wages

The legislation of all countries in the report makes provision for a national minimum wage. The rates of minimum wages are regularly adjusted to reflect developments in labour markets.

For a small proportion of the workforce in elementary low-skill jobs, the minimum wage has a direct impact, particularly in the services sector. It also constitutes an important benchmark for earnings expectations.

Minimum wages as of January 1st 2012 was highest in Slovenia at €763 a month. In Croatia they were second highest at €374. For the Baltic and Visegrad-4 states minimum wages were in the range of €230–360.

Bulgaria and Romania had minimum wages at about half the level of the previous group at €130–160. The minimum wage in Russia and in Ukraine was around €100.


Statutory minimum gross monthly wages, CEE countries on January 1st 2012

Country Local currency Euro US dollar
Bulgaria 270 138 177
Croatia 2 814 374 481
Czech Republic 8 000 318 409
Estonia 290 290 373
Hungary 93 000 321 413
Latvia 200 285 366
Lithuania 800 232 298
Poland 1 500 358 461
Romania
700 157 202
Russia
4 611 115 148
Slovakia
327 327 420
Slovenia
763 763 980
Ukraine
1 073 104 134




exchange rates: annual averages 2012
Source: Database Central Europe

 


Statutory minimum gross monthly wages, CEE countries on January 1st 2013

Country

Local currency Euro US dollar

Bulgaria

310 159 204

Croatia

2 814 374 481

Czech Republic

8 000 318 409

Estonia

320 320 411

Hungary

98 000 339 435

Latvia

200 285 366

Lithuania

1 000 290 372

Poland

1 600 382 491
Romania
700 157 202
Russia
5 205 130 168
Slovakia
338 338 434
Slovenia
784 784 1 007
Ukraine
1 147 112 144




exchange rates: annual averages 2012
Source: Database Central Europe

 

Looking at the relative level of minimum wages the ratio of minimum to average wages is highest in Slovenia at 50% followed by Hungary, Latvia, Poland, Ukraine and Slovakia where minimum wages were above 40% of the previous year’s average earnings. In Russia minimum wages are lowest at 20% of average earnings, with the remainder of the countries having established minimum wages at 32–39% of average earnings.

Over the 2007–2011 period minimum wages calculated in Euro increased almost five-fold in Russia. In Latvia they increased by 122% and in Slovakia and Romania by around 70%. Compared to 2006 minimum wages in Euro increased the least in Hungary and in the Czech Republic by 18-22%.

 

Minimum monthly wages in Euro, CEE countries in 2007 and 2012



Minimum monthly wages as of January 1st 2012 in percent of average gross earnings 2011