Rus News Journal

Interview

Rostislav Kapeljushnikov
the deputy director of the Center of labour researches of the Higher school of economy
the period of mercenary intimidation by unemployment " Has come;
- Than it is possible to explain backlog of a rate of unemployment in Russia in days of reforms from rates of falling of manufacture?
- Nobody assumed that at gross national product decrease on 40 %, and industrial production twice unemployment will slowly steal up to a mark of 10 %, only for some years will exceed it, and then will be reduced almost twice. In the USA in days of Great depression at comparable curtailment of production it long was above 20 %. One of the reasons that in Russia the enterprises did not aspire to dump excessive labour. It was cheaper to keep it, than forsirovanno of it to get rid. Other reason - sharp reduction in price of cost of labour that allowed to support demand for it for higher mark. All it gave to the Russian unemployment smooth, not explosive character and reduced its scales. Now unemployment in Russia one of the lowest among all postsocialist countries.
- why costs of clearing of superfluous workers so are high?
- They developed of several elements. For dismissal it is necessary to warn the worker for two months and to pay it the severance pay, equal two - to three-monthly earnings. And in regions of the Far North where it is concentrated about 10 % of all occupied, the grant reaches six-monthly earnings. Besides, at the old Labour Code you should obtain the permit of trade union which possessed the absolute veto and could disagree with dismissal without any explanation of the reasons. If to operate strictly under the law, costs turn out huge. Therefore employers preferred to squeeze out instead of reductions workers indirect methods - salary delays, deterioration of working conditions.
- Now the situation has changed?
- With acceptance of the Labour code one has changed only: trade unions have lost the veto. In the rest the order of dismissal and costs remained former. In Russia one of the most rigid systems of protection of employment. In the majority of the countries in the labour legislation are provided or terms of the prevention of dismissal, or the severance pay, but not that and another together. After all actually after the prevention of dismissal the employee ceases to work, searches for a new place. It turns out that it is really necessary to pay it almost semi-annual earnings. It is interesting that at discussion of the Labour code the question on these costs did not rise at all.
- programs of development of variety of branches assume mass reductions. It turns out, what now the enterprises are ready to incur the costs connected with it?
- Actually all conversations on huge reductions is PR - campaign. Let`s look, how much they are plausible. For example, metallurgists speak about dismissal 300 - 350 thousand persons. And all in ferrous metallurgy it is occupied about 750 thousand It turns out that one of the most successful industries will reduce number of the personnel twice! It is difficult to me to present it even if in critical years it has lost all order of 100 thousand workplaces.
- that then really stands up for conversations on mass reductions?
- Everything that you hear from motorists, metallurgists and state officials about reductions, is partly connected with the simplified representations about the Russian labour market, and partly reflects corporate and departmental interests.
- and how a problem of re-structuring and increase of overall performance of the enterprises?
- it is very simple. In all branches now there is an active natural leaving of labour - ten and hundred thousand persons a year. It is enough to freeze employment, and you quickly will reach decrease in number of the personnel, if really problem in it. Yes, actually, and occurs in practice.
- that is spontaneous dismissals on scales are comparable to planned reductions?
- Moreover, in all industries including in the metallurgy, the compelled dismissals remain minimum. Personnel reductions make 3 - 5 % from total number leaving. In the same ferrous metallurgy they last years do not reach even 5 thousand persons.
is means, what danger of social consequences of re-structuring of the industry also is strongly exaggerated?
- it is unconditional. Judge, for 90 - e years number occupied in the industry has fallen almost to 9 million persons, that is on 35 - 40 %, and no accident on a labour market has occurred. Now there it is occupied about 14,5 million persons, labour dump proceeds. And even if overactive re-structuring with mass lay-offs will begin, it at all will not lead to unemployment splash. In - the first, generally re-structuring assumes not liquidation, and the detachment of not profile manufactures is simple. In - the second, even at real liberation not all become the unemployed. The part will find work, the part will leave in economic neaktivnost. Notice that about unemployment scales in Russia unlike the western countries the majority of people has very vague representations. This theme never appeared on a first line of political fights, did not take an important place in programs of parties. The majority of politicians, businessmen, economists (if only they not experts in this problem) will not tell at all to you, what now a rate of unemployment in the country. In other countries the situation is different. There it is really exact indicator of economic temperature, at us - is not present. Re-structuring acceleration can aggravate, of course, an unemployment problem in separate points, but it it will be inevitable to carry local, instead of global character. To mass one-stage dump of labour to undertake in general - that is no place. If it it was not observed even in the conditions of deep economic recession, it would be twice surprising to expect it in the conditions of growth.
- why this theme so is lifted often recently by state departments and participants of branches?
- the Fear before unemployment does people by more appeasable. It is not excluded, what exactly therefore their requirements to the salary were and remain rather moderated, they keep for workplaces. In the Russian economy the fear before unemployment has replaced in the paradoxical image real unemployment. Negative forecasts which go today from different sources, psychologically return us to the beginning 90 - h years. And if then it there was a disinterested fear before unemployment (anybody really did not know how affairs will go) the period of mercenary intimidation by it now has, seemingly, come.
interview took RENATA - JAMBAEVA