Berlin, March 8: In 2021, women in Germany earned 18 per cent less per hour on an average than men, the country's Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) said. The average gross hourly earnings of women in Germany was 19.12 euros ($20.8s), 4.08 euros lower than those of men, Destatis reported on the occasion of Equal Pay Day.

The gender pay gap was reduced by eight euro cents only within one year in the country, reports Xinhua news agency. Chancellor Olaf Scholz spoke out in favour of narrowing the gender pay gap. Mother’s Equal Pay Day 2021: Ahead of Mom’s Day, Know Significance of This Observance Raising Awareness on Gender Pay Gap.

"We want to and will change that," he said on Twitter on Monday. "Women make up just over half of society - that must be reflected in everything, not least in salaries." The gender pay gap is largely due to structural reasons, as women tend to work fewer hours and in lower-paying jobs, Destatis noted.

For comparable qualifications, occupations and employment histories, the gender pay gap is much smaller but women still earn 6 per cent less on average than males. "The Covid-19 crisis has shown us once again that it is women who keep our country running," said Federal Minister of Labor and Social Affairs Hubertus Heil in a statement.

"Except that this is not expressed in wages. It must not stay that way." The Trades Union Congress (TUC), the largest trade union organization in England and Wales, said recently in a report that the gender pay gap among all employees in the UK is 15.4 per cent.

In other words, an average woman in the country effectively works for free for 56 days of the year compared to an average man. "It's shocking that working women still don't have pay parity. At current rates of progress, it will take nearly 30 more years to close the gender pay gap," TUC General Secretary Frances O'Grady said.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Mar 08, 2022 02:20 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website