The wage gap between East and West remains large

As of: April 3, 2024 9:14 a.m

The fact that wages and salaries in East Germany are lower than in the West has been a source of frustration for years. The gap remains large, as figures from the Federal Statistical Office show.

The income differences between East and West Germany remain large even more than 33 years after reunification.

Last year, according to the Federal Statistical Office, full-time employees in eastern Germany earned an average of 824 euros gross per month less than colleagues in the west. A year earlier the difference was 842 euros.

Hamburg is ahead when it comes to gross wages

The head of the Left Bundestag group, Sören Pellmann, asked the statistics office for the latest figures. According to this, gross monthly earnings without special payments nationwide averaged 4,468 euros in 2023. In the west it was 4,578 euros, in the east 3,754 euros.

Hamburg achieved the best average value at 4,970 euros. Saxony-Anhalt came last with 3,688 euros. This means that eastern salaries are on average 82 percent of the values ​​in the west, explained Pellmann. In the last ten years, the wage gap between the new and old federal states has remained stable at over 800 euros.

Warning about poverty in old age

“In the spirit of the Basic Law, the Left has been demanding equal living conditions in East and West for over three decades,” said the Leipzig member of the Bundestag. “The reality continues to be different.” The “low wage orgy” in the eastern federal states is leading to poverty in old age. “The East is tired of low wages.”

Trade union organization and the robust demand for employee rights can point the way to the wage unity that has often been promised but is far from achieved, says Pellmann.

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