Wage and Salary Trends and Social Insurance


Egypt's minimum wage for public sector workers increased from EP 700 ($102) to EP 1,200 as of 1 January 2014, an increase of 71.4%.[72] In 2014, Daily News Egypt reported that no minimum wage for workers in the private sector has been set, and as such is only applicable for public sector workers.[73] The Ministry of Planning Monitoring and Administrative Reform (MPMAR) is currently working on a study to propose an increase in the public sector minimum wage from EP 1,200 to EP 1,500 for the fiscal year 2017/2018, but this may not be viable as the state cannot afford to cover this increase.[74]

Average pay across sectors for government employees was EGP 22 per hour in 2015, while average pay across sectors for private employees was EGP 14 per hour. Average sectoral duration of work was 5.3 hours less for government employees, and sectoral average pay was 65% higher than the private sector average. In those industries where private sector weekly wages are higher, working hours are longer. For instance, pay for employment in the industries of water supply, sewerage networks, etc. is higher among private sector employees, yet they work 12 hours more than public sector employees for an additional EGP 38. In the only two industries where private sector working hours are fewer (electricity and information and communication), public sector pay is disproportionately higher.

Table 5.31: Average weekly wages & working hours by sector and industry (2015)

Industry group Private sector Public sector
Average working hours Average salary Average working hours Average salary
Agriculture, hunting, forestry, and fishing 61 502 55 656
Mining and quarrying 51 1,900 48 1,006
Manufacturing 56 492 53 643
Electricity, gas, steam and air conditioning supply 48 912 49 1,116
Water supply; sewerage networks, waste management & treatment 62 881 50 843
Construction 55 709 48 748
Transport and storage 58 703 53 1,117
Wholesale and retail trade, repairing motor vehicles and motorcycles  58 792 56 578
Accommodation and food service 59 443 53 1,047
Information and communication 50 598 52 1,545
Financial intermediation and insurance 58 2,110 46 2,907
Real estate and rent 59 589 - -
Specialised scientific and technical activities 56 733 46 685
Administrative and support service activities 56 431 46 1,010
Education 54 382 - -
Health and social work activities 55 346 54 1,364
Arts, entertainment and recreation activities 56 450 - -
Other service activities 52 504 46 1,197
Total 56 594 51 1,064

Source: CAPMAS, 2015[75]

Gender gap in wage equality

In 2016, Egypt’s female-to-male ratio of wages for similar work was 0.764, indicating that females earn 76% of what their male counterparts do for similar work. Egypt scores relatively well on wage equality. The Global Gender Gap Report 2016 ranked Egypt 19th out of 144 countries for wage equality between the sexes, which was better than Morocco’s (123rd), South Africa’s (86th), and Nigeria’s (25th). However, it is important to note the country’s low female participation rate in the labour force and high female unemployment rate.

Table 5.32: Regional comparison: female-to-male ratio for wage equality for similar work (2016)

Country Ratio Rank
Egypt 0.764 19
Morocco 0.535 123
Nigeria 0.752 25
South Africa 0.619 86

Source: World Economic Forum, 2016[76]

Social insurance and pensions

In 2009, 14.6 million Egyptians actively contributed to pension schemes. This amounted to 55.1% of the labour force, or 27.9% of the working-age population.[77] In terms of unemployment insurance, a 2011 IMF paper showed that Egypt ranked relatively high in terms of the ratio of unemployment benefits a worker can expect relative to his/her lost gross earnings. Egypt ranked 26th of 51 countries, ahead of more developed nations such as Japan (30th), the United States (31st) and the United Kingdom (46th).[78]

  • Country Profile
  • Introduction
  • Broad Economic Indicators
  • Currency and Exchange Rate
  • Competitiveness and Ease of Doing Business
  • Foreign Investment and Largest Companies
  • Foreign Aid
  • Country Strategic Framework
  • Summary of Economic Conditions
  • Implications, Challenges and Recommendations
  • Population
  • Living Standards and Poverty Levels
  • Healthcare
  • Implications, Challenges and Recommendations
  • Qualifications Profile of the Population and Workforce
  • Levels of Schooling and Basic Education
  • Technical and Vocational Education and Training
  • Tertiary Education
  • Innovation in Egypt
  • Implications, Challenges and Recommendations
  • Labour Force
  • Employment by Sector
  • Employment by Skill Level
  • Employment by Occupation
  • Labour Productivity
  • Unemployment and Job Creation
  • Expatriates, Immigrants and the Egyptian Diaspora
  • Wage and Salary Trends and Social Insurance
  • Industrial Relations Framework
  • Labour Market Efficiency
  • The Fourth Industrial Revolution
  • Implications, Challenges and Recommendations

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