Eastern Germans earn less but work more than their western counterparts

Eastern Germans earn less but work more than their western counterparts

Eastern Germans earn less but work more than their western counterparts

Figures from the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) reveal that people in eastern Germany earn significantly less than those in western Germany, despite working longer hours, on average.

Western Germans paid more

German newspapers have reported that the salary gap between people working in western Germany and eastern Germany is still significant. According to the figures, which were obtained from the Federal Statistical Office, workers in the western (old) federal states earn an average of six euros more per hour than their eastern counterparts. Last year, the average gross salary of employees in western Germany came to 26,26 euros an hour, whilst eastern Germans only made 20,28 euros.

The highest hourly wage could be found in Hamburg, where employees earned 26,68 euros on average. Conversely, the lowest hourly wage was in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, where employees earned just 19,45 euros on average. Special payments, such as bonuses and holiday pay, were included in the calculations.

However, the eastern (new) federal states actually do far better when it comes to the gender pay gap, with male employees in eastern Germany earning just 94 cents more per hour than female employees. In Germany’s western states, male employees earn an average of 5,38 euros per hour more than their female counterparts.

Eastern Germans work longer hours

The newspapers also reported that, despite earning more on average, western Germans actually have shorter weekly working hours than people in the eastern states. According to the figures, employees in the western states worked an average of 34,2 hours per week, whilst eastern employees work 35,7 hours per week on average.

Across Germany’s federal states, employees in Saxony-Anhalt worked the most, clocking in 36,2 hours per week, on average. Whereas employees in Baden-Württemberg worked just 33,8 hours per week on average, the lowest in Germany.

William Nehra


William Nehra

William studied a masters in Classics at the University of Amsterdam. He is a big fan of Ancient History and football, particularly his beloved Watford FC.

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