The State Statistics Service of Ukraine released a new report of the average salaries in Ukraine throughout 2023, categorized by industries, which showed a steady increase but might not be able to account for inflation and exchange rates.

According to the report, those who work in “information and communication” have the highest average salary, which grew from Hr.36,484 ($954) per month from the first quarter of 2023 to Hr.41,326 ($1,081) by the end of the year – a 23 percent increase from the year prior.

The information and communication industry encompasses roles in publishing, movie, video and music production, radio and television broadcasting, computer programming, information services and telecommunication services.

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A Kyiv Post report from December, citing a United States Agency for International Development (USAID)-funded research, showed that IT specialists make a median salary of $2,630.

In comparison, those in “agriculture, forestry and fishing” make an average of Hr.15,569 ($407) by the end of 2023, while those in “education” earn an average of Hr.13,500 ($353), a meager 0.5 percent increase from the year prior – a prevalent issue in post-Soviet nations where there are low financial incentives for locals to take up teaching jobs.

The two industries that registered a decrease compared to the year prior are “arts, entertainment and recreation activities” and “libraries, archives, museums and other cultural activities,” which make Hr.12,627 ($330) and Hr.12,204 ($319) per month on average respectively.

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The data does not take into account the regions under Russian occupation.

While Ukraine continues to use hryvnia as its official currency, the US dollar is sometimes the preferred method of salary payment, especially for the IT industry or those who work with overseas clients.

The exchange rate has been mostly stabilized in recent months, but it’s still significantly lower than pre-invasion rates: At the time of writing, the official US dollar to hryvnia rate is 1 to 38 based on data from the National Bank of Ukraine.

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In January 2022, one month before the full-scale invasion, it was roughly 1 to 28 – which means the currency devalued by 28 percent in two years. 

While the salary did increase over time, it might not be able to catch up with inflation and exchange rates, depending on the industry.

The average salaries depicted in the government report, if accurate, could mean that much of the population cannot afford to rent a flat in the capital.

A report published by a Ukrainian news outlet in November 2023 showed that rent in the capital increased by 36 percent in one year, with the average cost now being Hr.17,500 ($457).

While it is possible to have a roof over your head for Hr.8,000 ($210) in Kyiv – with more housing possibilities if one chooses to relocate – the current figures could be a depiction of the challenges Ukrainians need to cope with as the war marches on, when some are forced to relocate and start anew, even inside their own country.

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