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Public Opinion Survey Reveals Georgians’ Attitudes to Minimum Wage

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On May 27, Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES) released a public opinion survey, revealing that about 3/4 of Georgians support having a minimum wage, with the perceived decent minimum wage, on average, amounting to GEL 854.1 (USD 267).

According to the survey, 48% of respondents say they fully support the idea; 27% –  partially support having a minimum wage; 12% – partially or fully oppose the idea, while 12% either don’t know or refuse to answer. 

The survey revealed that the persons with higher education have a 78% chance of supporting minimum wage. Probabilities are lower for respondents with vocational (74%) and secondary (70%) education. 

The survey, fielded by the Caucasus Resource Research Centers (CRRC) for FES between April 2 and April 7, includes 1,351 interviews, which were conducted in Georgian, Armenian, and Azerbaijani. It was carried out through the analysis using a cell phone survey (excluding Russian-occupied territories) and its theoretical margin of error for proportions does not exceed 2.67%.
 

“Although what Georgians consider as reasonable wages is not what the majority of employees receive as a remuneration,” the survey reads.

Perceived decent amount of minimum wage – GEL 854.1 (on average) –  is more than four times as high as the current subsistence minimum and more than forty times higher than the current minimum wage.

In the meantime, men, Tbilisi residents, and ethnic Georgians are more likely to name higher values for a decent minimum wage than women, residents of rural areas, and ethnic minorities.

Perceptions of a decent salary differ among the employed and unemployed respondents. In particular, employed respondents name an average value of GEL 1,457 (USD 455) as a decent wage in their occupations, and unemployed respondents name GEL 1,288 (USD 402) as a fair salary at occupations they wish to be employed in. 

Georgian employers are required to pay GEL 20 (USD 6.25) monthly minimum wage, a requirement which has existed in the country since 1999.

This post is also available in: ქართული (Georgian) Русский (Russian)

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