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Russia Moves to Increase Productivity by 50%

Published: July 11, 2014 (Issue # 1819)



  • Engineers working on a jet engine at the Salyut plant in Moscow.
    Photo: Denis Grishkin / Vedomosti

In an effort to transform Russia's oil-dependent economy into a sustainable engine of growth, the government has unveiled a series of legal and financial measures aimed at fulfilling President Vladimir Putin's ambitious pledge to increase Russia's labor productivity 50 percent by 2018.

Approved Wednesday and published online Friday, the government's plan dictates a series of equally ambitious industry benchmarks that would see productivity in the aviation industry more than double by 2018. Productivity at small and mid-size industrial enterprises is intended to climb by nearly 50 percent, while productivity in construction is expected to rise by 30 percent.

These targets far exceed the government's earlier forecast for the same period, which anticipates productivity as a whole rising just 1.1 percent in 2014, 2.1 percent in 2015 and then gradually escalating to a total increase of about 13 percent by the end of 2018.

Productivity in Russia is now less than half that of Germany, less than 40 percent that of France and just 28 percent that of the U.S., although it still exceeds the levels of China, Brazil and India, according to a study published in April by the Plekhanov Russian University of Economics.

State attention has been firmly fixed on the issue since 2012, when Putin during his third inauguration set the government the formidable task of raising productivity 50 percent across the Russian economy by 2018.

But so far progress has been slow, with productivity economy-wide rising just 3.8 percent in 2012, according to the study.

In May, Putin once again called for a drastic overhaul of Russian industry as the key to sustainable economic growth.

"Russia needs a real technological revolution, a serious technological renewal, we must perform the most sweeping technological upgrade of our enterprises in the last half decade," Putin said in a speech to domestic and foreign business leaders at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum.

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Friday, Oct. 31


Put your grammar and logical thinking to the test in a fun and friendly environment during the British Book Center’s Board Game Evening starting at 5 p.m. today. The event is free and all are welcome to attend.



Saturday, Nov. 1


The men and women who dedicate their lives to fitness get their chance to compete for the title of best body in Russia at today’s Grand Prix Fitness House PRO, the nation’s premier bodybuilding competition. Not only will men and women be competing for thousands of dollars in prizes and a trip to represent their nation at Mr. Olympia but sporting goods and nutritional supplements will also be available for sale. Learn more about the culture of the Indian subcontinent during Diwali, the annual festival of lights that will be celebrated in St. Petersburg this weekend at the Culture Palace on Tambovskaya Ul. For 100 rubles ($2.40), festival-goers listen to Indian music, try on traditional Indian outfits and sample dishes highlighting the culinary diversity of the billion-plus people in the South Asian superpower.



Sunday, Nov. 2


Check out the latest video and interactive games at the Gaming Festival at the Mayakovsky Library ending today. Meet with the developers of the popular and learn more about their work, or learn how to play one of their creations with the opportunity to ask the creators themselves about the exact rules.



Monday, Nov. 3


Non-athletes can get feed their need for competition without breaking a sweat at the Rock-Paper-Scissors tournament this evening at the Cube Bar at Lomonosova 1. Referees will judge the validity of each matchup award points to winners while the city’s elite fight for the chance to be called the best of the best. Those hoping to play must arrange a team beforehand and pay 200 rubles ($4.80) to enter.



Tuesday, Nov. 4


Attend the premiere of Canadian director Xavier Dolan’s latest film “Mommy” at the Avrora theater this evening. The fifth picture from the 25-year-old, it is the story of an unruly teenager but the most alluring (or unappealing) aspect is the way the film was shot: in a 1:1 format that is more reminiscent of Instagram videos than cinematic art. Tickets cost 400 rubles ($9.60) and snacks and drinks will be available.



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