Germany and Austria lag behind in EU gender pay gap indicator
Mar 4, 2011, 13:22 GMT
Brussels - Germany and Austria were exposed Friday as having some of the largest gender pay gaps - the amount by which women are paid less than men - in the European Union.
German women earned, on average, 23 per cent less than their male counterparts, while in Austria the figure was over 25 per cent, said Eurostat, the EU's statistical agency, quoting data from 2008.
Across the bloc, the average gender pay gap was 17.5 per cent. Estonia (30 per cent) and the Czech Republic (26 per cent) were the worst offenders, while Italy (5 per cent) and Slovenia (8.5 per cent) had the smallest differences.
Among other large EU nations, Britain's pay gap was over 21 per cent; France's was just under 18 per cent; Spain's was just over 16 per cent; Poland's was roughly 10 per cent.
The figures were released ahead of Saturday's Equal Pay Day and of Tuesday's International Women's Day, and amidst increasing activism by the EU's justice commissioner, Viviane Reding, on gender equality issues.
Publication of the data also came in the wake of a ruling earlier this week by the EU's court of justice, which told insurance companies they would have to stop charging different premiums to men and women by the end of 2012.
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