Fwdd from Jurriaan (wage disparities)

Julio Huato juliohuato at SPAMhotmail.com
Tue Jun 26 19:50:21 MDT 2001


This is an interesting e-mail from Jurriaan.  It was sent on 6/22/01.

Julio,

A while ago I found some statistics in the liberal daily here which you may
find interesting (NRC Handelsblad, circa October 1995).  They concern the
average labour costs for production workers in industry in Europe, the USA
and Asia in 1995, computed as an index by the Institut der deutschen
Wirtschaft (German Economic Institute), where Holland = 100. The list goes
as follows:

Country                         Index number
1.              West Germany            126
2.              Switzerland             119
3.              Belgium         107
4.              Norway          104
5.              Japan                   103
6.              Austria                 101
7.              Netherlands             100
8.              Denmark         99
9.              Luxemburg               94
10.             Finland         92
11.             Sweden                  89
12.             France                  83
13.             United States           80
14.             Italy                   78
15.             East Germany            76
16.             Canada          76
17.             Australia               67
18.             Ireland                 64
19.             Great Britain           63
20.             Spain                   58
21.             Greece                  35
22.             Singapore               29
23.             Portugal                27
24.             Korea                   25
25.             Taiwan                  25
26.             Hong Kong               22
27.             Hungary         13
28.             Poland                  10
29.             Czech republic          9
30.             Slovak Republic 8
31.             Thailand                8
32.             Malaysia                7
33.             Bulgaria                5
34.             Roumania                4
35.             Indonesia               3
36.             Russia                  3
37.             China                   2

As you can see, a German production worker earns on average something like
60 times what a Chinese worker does. Of course this is a rough indication of
magnitude only. The index numbers are rounded off, and "labour costs" would
probably also include, in addition to taxes, social security levies etc.
made in respect of employees (these are generally higher in developed
capitalist countries). Also, the figures ignore "free" services or subsidies
which may be provided by the state and which supplement the wage.

Still, I think you can say that the international disparity in workers wages
is much greater than the disparity between most employers/company directors
and workers here in Europe. E.g. a Dutch boss might earn 15 to 20 times what
a worker earns, but not usually more (in the USA it's a different story).

Regards

J.

_________________________________________________________________________
Get Your Private, Free E-mail from MSN Hotmail at http://www.hotmail.com.






More information about the Marxism mailing list