Friday, December 09, 2005


Interesting enough, but while, according to Elli, the average salary in Estonia is 7000 krones (450euros), while the paramedics` ambulance cardrivers get only 3500 krones, while teachers get 5000 krones and while firemen earn 4380 krones a month, there's no such day when I don't see a woman with a Luis Vuitton handbag or a man with Dolce & Gabbana jeans. Also such brands as Richmond, Dior, Prada, Gucci, and Armani are consistently often seen.

Seems that there's something dissonant...


At 12:27 AM, Blogger mal viina said...

And this I'm sure is of course VERY different from what one would see in Latvia? Or any other Central & Eastern European country for that matter? A wee bit wider perspective would have been nice. Otherwise following your blog with great interest!

At 10:22 AM, Blogger Dace said...

Actually, yes it is different... I don't know about the rest of the Europe, since haven't travelled aroud for a couple of years now(still, I maintain that the average salary level in Central/Western Europe is A LOT higher than here in Estonia, so it's nothing surprizing if people with high salaries can afford designer clothes and accessories).
But, as regards Latvia - you really won't see a Luis Vuitton or Gucci bag out there every day! Really, I give you my word!

At 7:49 PM, Blogger Mika Tuupola said...

Yes. Average salary level for example in Finland 1) is about four times higher than in Estonia 2). Then again everything costs three or four times more in Finland than Estonia.

In Helsinki some policemen have to have two jobs to be able to live in Helsinki and support their families. In Helsinki you can see people collecting empty bottles for money and begging in the streets. There is 4440 homeless single people and 600 homeless families in Helsinki 3). Most of the people in Finland or rest of the Europe can NOT afford designer bags either.
Still you can see Prada and Luis Vuitton carried around and people driving Porches and Maseratis.

Estonia really is not that much different than rest of western europe. It is an utopia that all people will someday have equal income.

As far as I know there is also a middle class in Estonia. Not everyone is either extremely poor or extremely rich.

1) Average earnings by occupation and gender, 2003 (Finland)
2) Average monthly salary by job families, 2004 (EUR) (Estonia)
3) More than half the country's homeless in the Greater Helsinki area

At 8:34 PM, Blogger Dace said...

Of course, every country faces the problems of homelesness or that of begging people on the streets...and much more.
Still, I'd claim that bearing in mind all those numbers of GDP, productivity, comparative advantage, export, balance of trade and many others, people in, for example, Finland live better (are more well off) than in Latvia or Estonia, thus, let's say, having more money that they can spend on Prada.

Yes, but I guess you are right - people having same income definitely is a utopia!

At 7:17 AM, Blogger T! said...

well about seeing prada and D&G etc. stuff in estonia...really for me is it sometimes hard to understand too...about the average income, thats just true--> we don't pay a blue collar worker more than 400€, our best engineer get not more than 900€, between 400€ - 1000€ are different salary levels depending on the specilaisation and potential of someone...and thats why it is also pointless to discuss about a average income. I mean an average income says nothing, if you want to find a comparison with other countrys you should better compare the average income of every occupation and compare the occupation related average income with the comparable income in western europe...but one think to the end, its true the income in germany is much bigger but it was'nt always economy needs years of experience, practising before the can become strong and know,the baltics are free and in the free economy since just 15years, it will need more time to increase the salaries and push the economy toward...I'm thinking that the Estonian's are expecting too much for the moment...

At 6:11 PM, Blogger Jens-Olaf said...

Many points I could agree with here. Germany is a rich country. But look at the people how they decide to life: Always wanting as much as possible. You have a family, one has a good payed full time job. You are bying a bigger house, have a new car etc.. Then you are losing your job and cannot find a similar one. You´ve lost the game. And that happens at each level of income. Higher income: Bigger house. Smaller income: smaller house. But all are living at the edge.

At 6:21 PM, Blogger Mika Tuupola said...

Dace, yes I agree. My point was Estonia is in no way especially evil of different country because some people can afford to wear Prada but ambulance drivers or teachers not. AFAIK it is the same in every western country.

At 10:48 AM, Blogger said...

Hi Dace, the site was launched today and we are featuring you blog as a good place to visit. You can see the articles here:http://www.baltlantis.coc/?id=10447


At 11:03 PM, Blogger Katlin said...


Well, it seems that at the time you wrote this, you guys(meaning Latvia ;)) and Lithuania had us beat in income inequality after all. Just to set the record straight. ;)))

"In 2004, the income of the richest 20 percent of Estonians was 5.9 times higher than that of the poorest 20 percent, the study said.

Income inequality on a similar basis was greater only in the fellow Baltic states of Lithuania, which had a ratio of 6.9 from richest to poorest, and Latvia (6.7), plus ex-communist Poland (6.6), and Portugal (8.2), which joined the EU in 1986."

You can read the complete article here:

That's not to say that I don't agree with your overall point, though.


At 1:33 PM, Blogger MR BARRY said...

99% of the bags and jeans and goods I saw and checked out such as expensive bags are Fake- I saw some that i reconised as being made in GOA as I know the Guy who owns the factory, had to laugh. Low wages High hotel prices good luck to the people for the few things they can afford,Have to find my self a beautiful lady from there.

At 1:37 PM, Blogger MR BARRY said...

Is that 7000 krones a month ?

At 1:39 PM, Blogger MR BARRY said...

What is legal secretary salery there for the month?? Any one know


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