Latest World News

5.8 million jobs better paid through minimum wage increase


The minimum wage has been €12 an hour since October last year. According to the Federal Statistical Office, several million people benefited from this. The increase also had consequences for jobs in the low-wage sector.

The increase in the minimum wage to twelve euros in October 2022 affected around 5.8 million jobs in Germany – almost every seventh job. This was announced by the Federal Statistical Office in Wiesbaden. Previously, 10.45 euros had been paid per hour.

Women are affected more often than average by the minimum wage increase at around 18 percent, while the figure for men is only around twelve percent. At around 18 percent, the proportion of employees from eastern Germany is higher than in western Germany, at 14 percent. Across all federal states, the proportion is highest in Saxony-Anhalt at 18.6 percent, while Baden-Württemberg has the lowest proportion of employment relationships affected by the minimum wage at 12.6 percent.

There are also clear differences between the sectors: the hospitality industry is particularly badly affected with a share of 48 percent and “agriculture, forestry and fishing” with 41 percent.

Minister of Labor Heil announces a significant increase in the minimum wage and better working conditions for 2024.

low-wage sector shrinking due to higher minimum wage

According to calculations by the Federal Office, the proportion of low-paid jobs has shrunk due to the increase in the minimum wage. It fell from 19 to 15 percent within six months. The low-wage sector includes jobs that pay less than two-thirds of median earnings.

The statutory minimum wage is set by an independent commission made up of three employers and three union representatives. Two scientific members are also available as advisors, but without voting rights. This so-called Minimum Wage Commission proposes to the Federal Government every two years to what extent the minimum wage should be adjusted. The commission is reappointed every five years.

New proposal as of June 30, 2023

Last year, the Commission did not set the minimum wage because it had previously been regulated in the coalition agreement. In the future, the Commission will decide again. On June 30, 2023, it makes new proposals that are to be implemented from January 1, 2024.

The minimum wage as the legal lower wage limit has existed in Germany since 2015. At that time it was EUR 8.50. The minimum wage applies to all employees over the age of 18, but not to trainees.