Top 10 highest-paying countries for software engineers in 2023

salaries and taxes

There is no global average developer salary. Apart from your experience, level of proficiency, and the country you live in, the benefits you get will highly depend on the company of your choice. For example, large enterprises and tech leaders like Meta, Google, Apple, or Amazon will offer much higher salaries compared to small to medium IT companies. 

To give you the fullest picture of software developer salaries around the world, we took four categories of software engineers:

  • with no experience working in a small to medium company, 
  • with 5-10 years of experience working in a small to medium company,
  • with no experience working in a tech giant company,
  • with 5-10 years of experience working in a tech giant company.

As various sources give slightly different information about average salaries in different countries, we based our judges on data from trustworthy international platforms, like PayScale, Glassdoor, and Levels.fyi. Hopefully, our analytics will help you determine the best country for a software engineer to live, work, and make money (all salaries below are given per year, in USD and before taxation).

CountryNo experience, small to medium companyMiddle to senior developer, small to medium companyNo experience, tech giant e.g. GoogleMiddle to senior developer, tech giant e.g. Google
Switzerland80,000 to 100,000165,000 to 200,000185,000300,000 to 400,000
USA80,000 to 100,000160,000 to 200,000186,000350,000 to 400,000
Germany50,000 to 60,00090,000 to 100,000120,000220,000
UK45,000 to 55,000100,000 to 120,000125,000280,000 to 300,000
Israel46,000 to 61,00082,000 to 100,000100,000 to 182,000164,000 to 232,000
Australia40,000 to 50,000115,000 to 130,00080,000 to 120,000200,000 to 220,000
Singapore40,000 to 62,00062,000 to 85,00080,000 to 115,000135,000 to 180,000

In contrast, you can compare these sums to software developer salaries in, let’s say, India, where the wages are traditionally quite low. A software engineer with a bachelor’s degree and no experience will make $5,000 to $15,000 a year. A person with five to ten years of experience can expect to have $35,000 to $45,000 a year, almost the same money as newbies in tech giants will get. The situation changes when we talk about enterprise-level tech companies that hire experienced developers. They are ready to pay $120,000 to $150,000 a year.

These were the salaries before taxation. But how would they change if we extract all the fees the country takes from its citizens to provide them with high quality of life, like medicine, education, and infrastructure? 

Taxation in EU: Software engineer salary in Europe

The taxes in European Union are known to be among the highest in the world. That is well understood as countries like Sweden, Finland, Belgium, or Italy use these taxes to provide all citizens, including underage kids and retired people, with a decent level of life. The government can take up to 50% of your income for its (yours, actually) needs. We believe that understanding taxation levels will help you decide which is the best country for software engineers in Europe.

CountryAverage salary per year, before taxation (USD)What you get in a month, after taxation (USD)
The Netherlands57,8003,190

Astounding, right? If taxation is a big issue for you, and you don’t really care what kind of additional benefits you get from the government (like free medicine of a high level or free public education), you can check on countries with lower taxation rates. For example, in Ukraine, the government provided a simplified taxation system for IT specialists to stimulate the tech industry in the country. That’s why Ukrainian developers pay, on average, 5% to 19,5% of their income as taxes.

Emerging destinations for software engineers

While established tech hubs like the United States, Canada, Germany, and the United Kingdom remain popular choices for software engineers, several emerging destinations are gaining attention in recent years. These countries offer growing tech ecosystems, exciting job opportunities, and attractive environments for software engineers.

  • Estonia, often referred to as the “Silicon Valley of Europe,” has a thriving tech scene and is known for its advanced digital infrastructure. The country is home to numerous startups, offers a supportive business environment, and has a high concentration of tech talent.
  • Ireland has become a hotspot for tech companies, with Dublin being a major tech hub. The country offers a favorable business environment and a young and talented workforce and has attracted many multinational tech companies (because some of them have left London after Brexit but decided to stay in the region), providing ample job opportunities for software engineers.
  • Poland has experienced significant growth in its tech sector these years, partially due to thousands of IT specialists who moved to Poland from Ukraine after the beginning of the full-scale invasion. Cities like Warsaw, Krakow, and Wroclaw have vibrant tech communities, a strong startup culture, and competitive salaries.

  • Singapore has established itself as a leading tech hub in Southeast Asia. Along with the advanced infrastructure, the country has a multicultural society. Singapore attracts top tech companies and provides opportunities for software engineers to work on innovative projects.
  • Israel, particularly Tel Aviv, has a thriving tech ecosystem called “Silicon Wadi.” The country is renowned for its startup culture, innovation, and expertise in cybersecurity and AI. Israel offers a vibrant tech community and opportunities for software engineers to work on cutting-edge technologies.
  • Vietnam has emerged as an attractive destination for software engineering talent. Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi are witnessing a rapid growth of tech companies and startups. The country offers competitive salaries, a young and tech-savvy workforce, and a supportive startup ecosystem.
  • Portugal has been gaining attention as a tech destination, with Lisbon leading the way. The city has a growing startup ecosystem, a large tech community, and a favorable work-life balance. Portugal offers an appealing lifestyle and a range of opportunities for IT specialists.


This is a series of articles dedicated to the global IT labor market, relocation, and the best countries for software engineers. Check out the following articles in our blog to find out more about visas and immigration policies in the USA, EU, Canada, Israel, Japan, and Singapore and the steps to take for relocation.


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