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Rural Poverty in Russia

русская версия

Опубликовано на портале: 31-12-2010
Мир России. 2000.  Т. 9. № 3. С. 128-136. 
Despite the fact that poverty is considered by Russian scholars and authorities one of the key problems of nowadays Russia enough attention has not been dedicated to studying it. Most of the studies done in the field deal with urban poverty.
The paper analyses rural poverty. Detailed calculations of incomes of rural dwellers of one raion of Leningrad region which can be considered depressive according to major economic indicators are given.
Comparison of incomes and subsistence wage corrected with respect to raion specifics, leads to a conclusion about vast rural poverty in the given raion. Arguments showing such situation is typical for Russia in general are given. The paper describes information sources and methods of calculation in detail which is especially valuable in the conditions of limited informing capacities of Federal statistics. What causes rural poverty? The main reason is the absence of labour market, suitable infrastructure and information environment. In rural remote districts labour market situation is rather special. As a rule new business structures did not appear when agricultural companies ended up their existence. The population tries to survive through self-provision with the necessary food grown at personal subsidiary plots.
The situation is especially dramatic when highly specialised workers loose their jobs as they do not have the skills for universal rural labour and live in multi-storey buildings that are not suitable for having personal subsidiary plots.
The major ways for overcoming poverty of rural population are the following:
creating jobs for rural dwellers;
formation of labour market infrastructure, that will facilitate job search;
subsidiary plots' specialisation, increase in their productivity and their gradual transformation into commodity producing farms;
improving level of equipment at functioning farms;
developing non-agricultural types of activity in rural regions;
organisation of alternative financing system for local producers of commodities through mobilising local (raion) development sources and organisation of funds for provision rural dwellers with micro-credits.
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