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Europe’s minimum wage gap

In 2023, European countries experience significant disparities in minimum wages, according to the latest data from Eurostat. Notably, Western European countries occupy the top six spots in terms of minimum wages. Luxembourg leads the pack with an impressive €2508 per month, followed by Germany at €1997 and the Netherlands at €1995. However, the situation is vastly different in the bottom three countries. Albania has the lowest minimum wage at a meagre €376 per month, followed by Bulgaria at €399 and Serbia at €461. These figures highlight the significant wage gap between the more prosperous Western European countries and the Central and East European nations.

While the nominal values of minimum wages vary widely between countries, the purchasing power of these wages can differ based on the cost of living in each nation. Moreover, it is worth mentioning that some countries, such as Denmark, Italy and Sweden, do not have a statutory minimum wage. Instead, wages are negotiated through collective bargaining agreements between employers and trade unions, adding another layer of complexity to the wage landscape in Europe.

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