By Vyacheslav Lovchev
The number of those registered as unemployed is actually falling. According to the National Statistical Committee of Belarus (Belstat), in the first half of 2013, there were 4,534,400 people registered as employed: 1.1 percent fewer than in the first six months of 2012. The Ministry of Labour and Social Protection notes the number of unemployed as 22,600 at the end of June this year: down 18.9 percent on June 2012 and 5.7 percent less than the figure registered at the end of May 2013.
It seems reasonable to suppose that many have taken seasonal work for the summer. Unemployment levels in Belarus continue at a record-low compared to neighbouring countries, comprising just 0.5 percent of the economically active population at the end of June this year. Since June 2012, the number has fallen by a tenth.
In the first half of 2013, 377,100 people moved to new employment, including 20,900 to newly created jobs; meanwhile, most of the 435,200 who left their place of employment did so independently. Only 6.9 percent were obliged to leave because of absenteeism and other violations while another 1.8 percent were made redundant, sometimes through the closure of their employing organisation.
Some branches of the Belarusian economy are experiencing acute staff shortage. In the first half of the year, 111,500 left industrial jobs, while only 92,400 took over vacant positions. Of the 42,500 who left jobs in education, just 26,900 replaced them. The sphere of transport and communications saw a similar situation, losing 26,400 employees and gaining 22,600. Those in building specialisations tended to stay in their jobs, with 3,000 more joining employment than leaving since the start of 2013.