Decline in labor force to last until 2027 in Russia, says World Bank

TASS Russian News Agency | Dec 4, 2019 at 1:30 PM

MOSCOW, December 4. /TASS/. The decline in the labor force could last until 2027 in Russia despite the retirement age hike, according to the World Bank's Russia Economic Report released on Wednesday.

"The decline in the labor force could last until 2027 despite the increase in retirement age," the report said.

The employment and labor-force participation rates declined slightly while unemployment was close to a minimum, the World Bank added.

"The absolute number of employed people decreased by 800,000 to 72.3 million in the third quarter of 2019, compared to a year earlier. The labor force decreased during the same period even more, by 1 million people, to 75.6 million. Employment and labor force participation rates declined in the third quarter of 2019 compared to the same period a year ago by 0.5 and 0.7 percentage points respectively. These rates were at 59.7% and 62.5% respectively," the report said.

The decline in economic activity was mostly driven by the aging of the population because the older age cohorts have lower employment and participation rates. As the share of these cohorts increases, the total rate goes down. This is also consistent with unemployment rates that continued to decline by another 0.2 percentage points in the third quarter of 2019 to 4.4%, the World Bank said.