Workers at SMEs earn 65% of wages for employees of large firms: report

By Yonhap
  • Published : Jan 10, 2019 - 21:41
  • Updated : Jul 29, 2019 - 17:23

Employees working for small and medium-sized companies in South Korea were paid, on average, 65.1 percent of the earnings of employees of a large firm in 2017, a report showed Thursday.

The average monthly wage of SME workers stood at 3.35 million won ($3,154) in 2017, compared with 5.14 million won paid to those working for big enterprises, according to the report by the Korea Federation of SMEs.


The wage discrepancy between large and smaller companies has shown no signs of narrowing over the past several years, from 64.1 percent in 2013, 62.3 percent in 2014, 62.0 percent in 2015 and 62.9 percent in 2016, the report showed.

In the manufacturing sector, the gap widened. The average monthly wage of a worker at a smaller manufacturing firm came to 3.34 million won, some 56.2 percent that at a big company, according to the report.

As of end-2017, South Korea had a total of 3.54 million SMEs, which accounted for 99.9 percent of the country's total business entities, and they employed 82.2 percent of the country's total workforce, or 14.35 million people, the report showed. (Yonhap)