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Russia is dying, the population fell for the first time in a decade, no one to work

Россия вымирает: численность населения упала впервые за десятилетие, работать некому

The influx of migrants no longer able to save the Russian labor market

For the first time in the last ten years Russia has faced a declining population. According to Rosstat, in January-may 2018 natural decline in the number of our fellow citizens to more than 147 thousand. As experts believe, the Russian Academy of national economy in the coming years in our country may benefit from the global demographic crisis and imbalances in the labour market — especially given the fact that migration growth has also stalled. Is the risk that by 2030 the number of people employed in the domestic labour market will fall by 10%, which would entail a decline in GDP of 0.3%.

According to researchers from the Russian Academy of national economy, from January to April 2018 the number of new migrants who came to work in Russia, amounted to little more than 57 thousand people. Over the same period last year migration growth reached 65 thousand people. Moreover, this stable rate was observed in recent years.


At the same time, as the data of Rosstat, in January-may 2018 the natural decline of the population to more than 147 thousand people. This parameter loss is even higher: in the same period of 2017 the population of our country decreased by about 112 thousand people.

Thus, in the first five months of 2018 due to the increase in international migration compensated for only 47% of natural population loss. “If such a negative balance does not change, this year, for the first time since 2009, Russia’s population could start to fall”, — stated in the monitoring Ranepa.

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After the population inevitably will shrink and the number of workers employed in the domestic economy. The first signs of skills shortages, analysts say, appeared on the Russian labor market even in 2017. Last year, the workforce in our country has decreased by 500 thousand people — up to 76 million it is Worth noting that over the last 10 years this figure practically has not changed, although the working-age population (men aged 16-60 and women aged 16-55 years) have steadily declined since 2006. Young pensioners formally came of working age, and continued to work, began to withdraw from the labour market.

Moreover, as the authors of the monitoring, workers are not able to offset the loss of labor activity, as the number of emigrants from Russia of foreign citizens exceeds the number of guests. Most of our country leaving the citizens of Germany, USA, Canada and South Korea. The number of foreign citizens from the EU living in Russia for the year decreased by 50 thousand people, and American citizens — to 5 thousand people. While others Far-Abroad countries — India, Turkey, Vietnam and Afghanistan — Russia only moved 2 thousand people.

A weak recovery of migration from Central Asian countries are not able to make up the loss from reduction in migrants from Ukraine. So, a leader in the supply of manpower in Russia in the first four months of the year was the Tajikistan — more than 12 thousand people. However, the number of migrants from Ukraine amounted to only about 7.5 thousand people. In January-April 2017 the number of Ukrainians living in our country, exceeded 27 thousand, and for the same period of 2016 — 35 thousand people.

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However, there is one positive thing. By reducing the labour force in the country also declined and unemployment: it reached 5.2% is the repetition of the minimum record in the history of modern Russia made in 2014. According to the state employment services, the number of vacancies per hundred of the registered unemployed increased from 116 to 146 positions.

However, in the future the situation on the domestic labour market risks only get worse. According to the Deputy Director of the Centre for labour market studies, Rostislav Kapelyushnikov of the HSE, if the trend in the natural population decline continues, by the end of the year, the total figure may be very poor or minus 300 thousand people. According to experts, the influx of migrants will not save the situation, which every year will become more critical: by 2020-2025, the number of employed workers with Russian citizenship, could be reduced by 15 million people. “In addition to the demographic crisis, will play the role of such factors as injuries and professional disease”, says Kapelyushnikov. Arriving in Russia migrants will not cover even half of this loss by 2030, the number of people employed in the domestic labor market threatens to fall to 7 million people or 10% to the current level of Russian workers that, according to the calculations of experts, will lead to a decline in GDP of 0.3%.

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