Belarusian Congress Of Democratic Trade Unions (BKDP)
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Belarusian Congress Of Democratic Trade Unions (BKDP)
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Belarusian authorities are trying to raise the average monthly salary in the country up to 500 USD as previously promised. According to experts, even if they manage to achieve this goal this artificial increase will become a serious blow to the budget, reports “Deutsche Welle”.

The Government of Belarus does not refuse from the goal to raise the monthly average salary up to $ 500 USD by the end of the year as it has been promised by President Lukashenko. According to experts, even if this would be achieved the groundless salary increase seriously would impair the economy of Belarus.

In pursuit of the promised

The average salary of 500 USD is a one of the symbolic things of the Belarusian regime. Exactly this amount to be reached by the end of 2010 has bee promised by Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko five years ago. The year of 2010 is winding up, but the promised wage is not available as yet.
At a recent meeting with participation of the President on the socio-economic development agenda the sacramental amount was updated. It was declared that having 500 USD average salaries in the country the wages in public sector should to be equal to 410 USD, and in agriculture - 320 USD. In particular, Prime Minister Sergei Sidorsky said that no one in the public sector should earn less than 200 USD in the equivalent.

The wages will be raised in two stages. From September 1, the tariff rate for low paid workers will be readjusted. And, from November 1, in order to support all public sector employees, the basic tariff rate of the first level will be doubled, said the Belarusian Prime-minister.

Unnatural growth

The former Labor Minister Alexander Sosnov notes that the current raising of wages in Belarus is artificial one. It is not based on objective factors such as economic growth, but "is adjusted to the elections." A. Sosnov has doubts on the state capacity to maintain salary of 500 USD after the elections. After all, according to former Minister, the real economy does not provide a revenue growth of Belarusian citizens.

Chairman of the steering committee for creating the Belarusian Labor Party Alexander Bukhvostov acknowledges the fact of bringing the average wage to a level of 500 USD, but also thinks that such growth is not caused by increased labor productivity.

In such conditions the wage increase will be executed alongside with the rise in prices on nearly all goods and services, believes A. Bukhvostov. In other words, Belarusians will not feel a significant improvement of living standards.

Where will money come from?

“Not a single sober-minded person will ever protest against wage increase. Such increase will be only welcomed” said Alexander Yaroshuk, Chairperson of the Belarusian Congress of Democratic Trade Unions (BKDP).

However, A. Yarshuk specifies, that people prefer a stable and a gradual income growth. And alongside with this a question arises here. The authorities assure us that by 2015 the average salary in Belarus will reach one thousand of USD, but it is not clear where will money come from?

Alexander Yaroshuk reminds, “whereas earlier, the improvement of living standards of Belarusians was maintained by economic support from Russia and now the Government of Belarus in most cases is taking credits.” He believes that the Government’s major goal is, as one soviet fairy tail on Malchish-Kibalchish says,” at least, we are to hold out in the daytime and survive at night”. In such conditions, according to Yaroshuk, the current increase in wages is perceived simply as a pre-election populism.”


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