The average monthly wage increased by 4.4 percent year-on-year in the last quarter of 2016, the Czech Statistics Office reported on Friday. Adjusted for inflation, it is an increase by 2.8 percent. The national average for the monthly salary in the Czech Republic currently stands at 29,320 crowns, which is around one thousand euros.
March 8 is International Women’s Day and women’s organisations in the Czech Republic are using the occasion to highlight pay inequality and other issues. One event taking place on Wednesday is a gathering aligned with A Day Without a Woman, an international campaign urging women to go on strike for the day to call attention to the gender pay gap. I spoke to Petra Jelinková from Ženy, one of several young feminist groups taking part here in Prague.
A new poll conducted by SC&C for Charles University’s Faculty of Education suggests that only 40 percent of students training to be teachers take up the profession after graduation. The number one reason? Frankly, miserable wages. The findings are not really a surprise but serve as a renewed warning that changes are needed.
Czechs spend on average 61 minutes of their work day on activities not related to their work duties, which is three minutes more than in the previous year, suggests a study carried out by the agency trueconneXion. According to estimates, this amounts to over 163 crowns a day and 40,000 crowns a year in lost productivity per employee. Time spent on social networks and writing private e-mails are the most common activities that Czechs engage in when they are supposed to be working.
The country’s security forces should see a 10 percent increase in wages as of July 2017, Interior Minister Milan Chovanec announced following a meeting with Finance Minister Andrej Babiš on Thursday. Mr. Babiš promised to earmark one billion crowns from state funds to make that possible; 600 million will come from the ministry’s own budget. The country’s police force has 40 thousand employees and the hike will also apply to the country’s close to 10,000 firemen, customs officials, secret service employees and prison wardens.
The average wage in the Czech automobile industry in 2016 stood at 34,820 crowns, which is an increase of 3.7 percent on the previous year, the Czech Automotive Industry Association reported on Thursday. That figure is 30 percent higher than the country’s average salary. High productivity of work and higher added value of products in the automobile industry is one of the main reasons behind the consistent salary growth.
Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka has made clear that his party, the Social Democrats (leading the current coalition government) would like to raise taxes on employees earning more than 40,000 crowns per month, and lower the burden for those earning less than 30,000 (the equivalent of around 1,100 euros). Large firms could also pay more under a progressive tax rate, the news site iDnes reports.
The e-commerce giant Amazon has announced further investments in the Czech Republic saying it will be hiring another 1,000 people in addition to the 3,000 it currently employs in order to meet growing customer demand. The job offers will be for qualified and unqualified workers, spanning engineering roles, logistics, and customer service, among other occupations, the company said. Amazon is making huge investments world-wide creating 15,000 new jobs in Europe and 100,000 in the United States.
At the request of Czech Radio under the Freedom of Information Act, the country’s Foreign Ministry has released bonus figures received by employees at the ministry last year. According to the public broadcaster, the ministry released the information anonymously, declining to reveal concrete names. The ministry cited privacy legislation as the reason for the modification. The highest bonus paid out to a ministry last year, according to the broadcaster, was 440,000 crowns, the equivalent of around 16 thousand euros. That went to an employee designated simply as Náměstek 12 (Deputy 12).