Expatica news

Belgian wage costs among world’s highest

17 August 2005

BRUSSELS — Wage costs in Belgian industry are the fifth highest in the world, a study by German research institute IW in Cologne has indicated.

However, it is not the hourly rate of pay, but the additional costs for employers — such as social security and holiday pay — that place Belgian wage costs so high internationally.

The IW — a respected economic research unit — investigated how much manufacturing companies of 25 countries paid for labour per hour last year. It made a distinction for Germany between East and West Germany.

Labour costs consist of hourly pay on one side and additional personnel costs on the other, such as social security premiums, holiday money, paid national holidays, end-of-year bonuses, professional education, etc.

The researchers said the cost price for one work hour is a good indicator of the competitive position of the country in question.

In Belgium, the average hourly wage in the manufacturing industry was EUR 13.16 last year, newspaper ‘De Tijd’ reported on Wednesday.

That is equitable with the Netherlands, Sweden, Britain, Ireland and the US, less than in Denmark, Norway. West Germany and Switzerland, but more than in Austria, France, Japan, Spain and Italy.

[Copyright Expatica News 2005]

Subject: Belgian news