A new survey shows that Irish workers are in line for the joint highest salary increase of any European Union member state - along with Malta - in 2020. 

The global review of salary movements around the world, from Willis Towers Watson, shows that Irish workers are in line for a 2.6% average pay increase in 2020.

It said this will result in an overall salary increase of 1.9% after inflation is accounted for. 

Willis Towers Watson noted that this is the second year in a row that Ireland has topped the EU rankings with a post-inflation salary increase of 1.7% recorded in 2019.

Other European Union countries that are expected to perform strongly include Luxembourg, with a salary increase of 1.7% expected, as well as Romania (1.7%) and Denmark (1.6%).

The survey also shows that Irish employees are seeing regular salary reviews, with 98% expecting a review in 2020, up slightly from 96% in 2019. 

Spring is the most popular time for reviews to take place, with over 50% of those in 2019 held during March and April.  

Jenny Smyth, Talent and Rewards Country Lead at Willis Towers Watson Ireland, said the survey results reflect the ongoing competition for talent across the economy.

"While it is fundamentally important to ensure that any salary increases are sustainable, these figures confirm that Ireland remains an attractive location for employers and employees alike," Ms Smyth said. 

"As employers focus on retaining and nurturing talent in a competitive Irish jobs market we are seeing innovation in approaches to total rewards but salary will always be the primary focus for all parties," she added.