Despite years of austerity policies, Greek civil servants remain significantly better paid than private sector wages, with their average wages 38 percent higher than their counterparts in the private sector, according to the Hellenic Federation of Enterprises (SEV).
The average net monthly wage in the public sector is 1,075 euros compared to 777 euros in the private sector, according to figures made public in SEV’s weekly bulletin which underlined that the gap between the two is widening rather than closing.
In the first half of this year, the average wage in the public sector rose marginally – by 0.1 percent – compared to a drop of 1.3 percent for private sector salaries, according to SEV’s analysis, which concluded that private sector workers saw their wages shaved by about 10 euros a month over that period.
In a related development, a report conducted by the civil servants’ union ADEDY reported an increase in permanent staff in the Greek civil service over the past year.
An additional 1,293 staff were hired between August 2016 and last August, bringing the total number to 566,022, according to the report.
Another finding was that most Greek civil servants – 80 percent of the total – take home a net monthly salary of less than 1,300 euros.
Half earn up to 1,000 euros a month, 44 percent take home between 1,000 and 1,500 euros and 3.6 percent net between 1,500 and 2,100 euros, according to the report.
Last month, SEV painted a dire picture of the state of the Greek pension system, which it described as running on empty, while warning that the country’s beleaguered private sector has taken on a disproportionate share of the burden to support pensioners and the public sector.
According to that report, each worker in the Greek private sector supports 2.8 people who are either unemployed or work in the public sector. It also estimated that by 2050 there will be one worker for each pensioner.
Reserves in social security funds will dwindle even as low birth rates and rising life expectancy exerts further pressure on the pension system.