Elena Razumova spoke in the Public Chamber at the roundtable devoted to agriculture and rural development. In her report “The dynamics, features of settlement and perspectives of the rural population in Russia” the expert told about the results of the research that was conducted by the Analytical Center.
As for the rural population in the post-Soviet period, then it is possible to distinguish three periods - until 1996 the population actively migrated from the former Soviet republics and settled in villages, small towns turned into rural settlements, so the number of village inhabitants grew. From 1996 to 2005 negative trends dominated, and after the implementation of the program of maternity capital the growth of the population and the self-recognizing of village residents as rural inhabitants occurred. “Possibilities of use the maternity capital for the rural population are much wider than for the city - it is the purchase of housing, and education, that is now crucial for the village, - said Ms. Razumova. - Therefore, the birth of children - also a significant financial incentive. The trend in terms of migration processes, which we expect in connection with the growth rate of labour force and incapacitated persons is not satisfying. The growth of the labour force has been negative for many years, and social support gives hope to change the situation for the better. However, the increase in the birth rate has already given an additional burden on educational institutions, and during the next 5-7 years it will be a serious challenge”.
The expert noted that the majority of the Central and Volga districts' population is rural, but that is where the negotiability of roads is the worst one, there is no even hard coating. It also affects the desire to leave the village. “The migration flow of population from these settlements will continue, and we shall not stop it, - the expert believes. - But the main factor is the difference between the incomes of rural and urban workers. People who live in rural areas, spend on food 7% more than the urban residents, although part of the food products they grow on their own, and the likelihood that this situation will change in any way is small. Expectations that the developing agro industrial complex will attract residents to the villages are also low”.
Ms. Razumova expressed cautious optimism regarding the increase in countryside property of the Russians. 60% of the cottages appeared after the collapse of the Soviet Union, and almost 70% of the population today are somehow related to the agricultural production. This is a typical feature of Russia, and it is not an indicator of status but a normal occurrence. All of this must be taken into account during the formation of the land legislation, the expert believes.
Link to the video from the event.