The meeting participants discussed, among other things, the employment programmes implemented in the regions, measures to reduce unemployment and support for small and medium-sized enterprises implemented as part of the Government’s action plan for sustainable development of the national economy and stability in the social sector in 2015.
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President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Colleagues,
The Government has prepared a plan for sustainable economic growth and stability in the social sector. Moreover, you have already begun to implement this plan in practice, and in my view, the launch was fairly good and overall successful.
At the same time, there are certain issues to which we need to give particular attention – I am referring, of course, to the social sector and the labour market. Compared to last year, as you know, this year we are seeing an increase in unemployment. It is slight and may fall into the margin of error: it went from 5.6% to 5.8%. But this forces us to look carefully at the social sector, and moreover, notice that a significant proportion of workers are working part-time hours, are on the brink of dismissal, or may lose their jobs. I will not cite the figures right now, they do not represent a significant concern, but nevertheless, they require our special attention.
The next issue concerns delayed salary payments. The volume of salaries not paid on time also grew this year, and it also requires our closer attention.
And finally, I want to address the decisions made to support and develop small and medium-sized entrepreneurship. It is very important to have opportunities in this sector of the economy to support the necessary number of jobs.
And another aspect I would like to point out. Whenever we have programmes like this, just as we did several years ago, we always stipulate resolving issues like higher mobility of labour resources, retraining, and further education. All this is right and should be done. At the same time, there is an issue I would like to draw attention to: we need to treat highly-skilled workers very carefully; we cannot lose them. And we need to give this matter special government attention.