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In 2018, more than 3.0 million people in the EU were employed in ‘general cleaning of buildings’, representing 2.3% of all people employed in the non-financial business economy. The ‘general cleaning of buildings’ employment class ranks fourth in terms of people employed in the EU.

The number of people employed under this heading increased by 18% since 2011.


General cleaning of buildings in the EU, 2018

Source datasets: sbs_na_1a_se_r2 (cleaning activities) and sbs_na_sca_r2 (total)


The Member States with the highest share of general cleaning of buildings were Belgium (3.9% of total employment) and Spain (3.7%), ahead of Germany (3.3%), Luxembourg (3.0%), France (2.7%) and Finland (2.6%).

In contrast, the lowest share was recorded in Bulgaria (0.2% of total employment), followed by Romania (0.5%), Poland and Slovakia (both 0.6%).



  • Data not available for Czechia and Malta due to low reliability.
  • ‘General cleaning of buildings’ activities include general (non-specialized) cleaning of all types of buildings, such as offices, houses or apartments, factories, shops and institutions, as well as general (non-specialized) cleaning of other business and professional premises and multiunit residential buildings. These activities are mostly interior cleaning although they may include the cleaning of associated exterior areas such as windows or passageways. This class excludes specialised cleaning activities, such as window cleaning, chimney cleaning, cleaning of fireplaces, stoves, furnaces, incinerators, boilers, ventilation ducts or exhaust units.
  • The European Union (EU) includes 27 EU Member States. The United Kingdom left the European Union on 31 January 2020. Further information is published here.


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