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09.09.2009

Real standard of living is falling

   

The Ukrainian Accounting Chamber reports that the level of inflation calculated at 9.5 % when approving the State Budget is underestimated. In the first half of the year consumer prices rose by 8.6% and the Chamber expects the increase in prices for consumer goods to exceed 15%.

Inflation has led to a real drop in basic State social guarantees and therefore to a fall in the standard of living. The real wages for January – June fell by 10.1 % which is the worst result for this period since 1999.

According to Article 55 of the Law on the State Budget, the minimum wage (per month) in January was 605 UAH, in June – 625 UAH. Against January there was a nominal increase of 3.3 %, but in actual terms, with inflation taken into account, it fell by 4.9%.

According to Article 54, the minimum pension in January was 498 UAH, and in June, taking into consideration norms from a Cabinet of Ministers Resolution No. 198 from 11 March – 505.5 UAH. There was thus a nominal rise of 1.5%, and an actual drop of 6.5%

With the subsistence minimum “frozen” at the level of last October (626 UAH), in view of inflation this has effectively fallen by almost 15 percent.  At the same time the actual amounts of the subsistence minimum for able-bodied persons and people unable to work came in June to 887 and 659 UAH, respectively, this exceeding the amount stipulated by the Law on the State Budget by 262 and 153.5 UAH. Nearly 3 million people earned less than the subsistence minimum for able-bodied persons in June.

Unemployment has also risen, with 671 thousand officially unemployed in June, or 9 people for every vacancy. In June last year, the figure was 555 thousand, or 3 people for each place. There has also been an increase in the number of people forced to work less than full-time. In comparison with the same period last year, the number of people forced to work shorter hours was 5.5 times higher, and there were 3 times as many people on administrative leave.

From a report at:

http://www.ac-rada.gov.ua/achamber/control/uk/publish/article/main?art_id=1521367&cat_id=411

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