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Another 500,000 Russians May Lose Jobs This Year

February 4, 2010

Unemployment will continue to grow in Russia even as the crisis abates this year, Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin said Wednesday, as another high level official warned that an additional 500,000 Russians were at risk of losing their jobs.

“Cost cutting and improved productivity will result in additional layoffs,” Kudrin said at a Troika Dialog investment conference. “Unemployment will continue to rise for awhile, even as the economy recovers.”

Russian unemployment crept up to a five-month high in December despite the country’s emergence from recession last year, data released by the Federal Statistics Service showed last week.

Unemployment rose to 8.2% in December from 8.1% the previous month. The economy shed an additional 42,000 jobs in December, bringing the total number of unemployed to 6.2 million, the data showed.

Meanwhile, Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Zhukov told a government panel that another 480,000 were at risk of being laid off this year, Interfax reported. Of these, 62,000 are currently employed in towns that depend on a single industry, he said.


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