Female employees in Belgium still gross on average €537 less, each month, than their male counterparts in 2019, while the difference in net salaries is €237 or 14.75%, the Partena Professional social secretariat reported on Wednesday.
The gap in gross salaries went down by an average of €3 compared to 2018, Partena Professional added, based on an analysis of 105,000 payslips.
The decrease was due to a reduction of the gap among university graduates, which went from €777 (17.8%) to 754 euros (16.86%), before deductions. For other educational levels, such as women with secondary-school diplomas or graduates of Higher Schools, the inequality continues to increase slightly.
According to Partena Professional, the gap keeps widening as men and women pursue their respective careers. “The inequality widens in particular after the age of 30,” notes Wim Demey, Customer Intelligence Manager at Partena Professional. “At that moment, there is a gap of over €300 per month, and it increases with age. That means women still pay a ‘heavy price’ for family life.”
By the end of their careers, at the age of 60+, women earn on average close to 20% less than their male colleagues.
The biggest losers are women with university degrees who have remained with the same employer throughout their professional lives, accumulating more than 40 years of service. Their average gross monthly income is €1,471 -22.86%- less than that of their male counterparts, notes Partena Professional.