Bratislava, Slovakia – The Czech Republic and Slovakia have among the highest gender pay gaps in Europe, according to new Eurostat data.
In the Czech Republic, men are paid on average 20.1% more than women in terms of gross hourly earnings for male and female employees. This is the third highest rate in the EU.
Only Estonia (22.7% difference) and Germany (20.9%) have higher gender wage gaps among EU member states.
Slovakia doesn’t fare much better than its Czech neighbour, with a 19.4% difference between what male and female employees earn, the fifth highest in Europe and nearly 5 points above the EU average (14.8%).
At the other end of the spectrum, the gender pay gap in Hungary (11.2%) and Poland (8.8%) – which was recently ranked as one of the top countries in Europe for female workers – are among the lowest in Europe, according to the EU’s statistical office.
The bloc’s most egalitarian countries in terms of equal pay are Romania (3% gap), Luxembourg (4.6%), Italy (5%), Belgium (6%) and Slovenia (8.7%).
In most EU countries, the gender wage gap is much lower for younger employees. In the Czech Republic, women under the age of 25 and between 25 and 34 years old are paid 10.4% and 13.6% less than their male counterparts, respectively (compared to 25% hourly pay difference for Czech men and women aged 35-44).
Similar patterns apply in Slovakia, Poland and Hungary, as in most EU member states.
Gender pay gaps also vastly vary depending on the economic sector, reaching its highest level in financial and insurance activities (respectively 39% and 32% in Slovakia and the Czech Republic) in many countries throughout Europe.
Pay inequality is also, in a majority of European economies, higher in the private sector than for public and state employees, with a particularly stark contrast observed in Poland and Slovakia.