MOSCOW, September 5 (Itar-Tass) —— Public sector employees will have no salary rises for the next three years if the projected budget is endorsed, Deputy Economic Development Minister Andrei Klepach said at the Public Chamber hearings on Tuesday.
“The current budget project means there will be no growth of public sector salaries for the next three years,” he said. “The discrepancy between plans and reforms is our constant problem. In fact, the budget structure, which is taking shape now, will make impossible, at least, in the medium-term prospect, the reform and development of such important sectors as science, education and healthcare. This is my personal opinion.”
Klepach stressed that the budgetary process was yet incomplete and the ministry hoped the budget would be much better in the end.
Still, there are a number of disagreements. The presidential decrees demand a major increase of salaries in education and healthcare. For instance, it is planned to double salaries of scientists by 2017.
That is an ambitious goal, not only from the material point of view, Klepach said. “There are certain social expectations and the need for large investments in these sectors. Otherwise education and science budgets will decline, and there will be stagnation in healthcare,” he said. “This means we will have private education and healthcare services, and business will have to finance research.”
The Economic Development Ministry has updated a socioeconomic development forecast for the period until 2015.
In all, there are three economic development scenarios. The baseline scenario is moderately conservative. The conservative scenario projects GDP growth at 3%, austerity in the public sector and a drop of investments, governmental investments included. This scenario is based on possible risks. The third scenario is based on the achievement of goals set by the Russian president.
The ministry also raised the inflation forecast to 7% in 2012, as compared with the earlier projected inflation rates of 5-6% in 2012, 4.5-5.5% in 2013, 4-5% in 2014 and 4-5% in 2015.
It said the average yearly dollar exchange rate would grow to 31.3 rubles to the dollar in 2012, instead of 29.2 rubles forecasted earlier, and reach 32.4 rubles to the dollar in 2013, 33 rubles to the dollar in 2014 and 33.7 rubles to the dollar in 2015.
The capital outflow forecast for this year was doubled, to $50-60 billion. The earlier forecast was $25 billion. The updated forecast says there will be no capital inflow of $15 billion in 2013 projected earlier. For now, the ministry confirmed the capital inflow forecast at $30 billion in 2014 and $40 billion in 2015.