Russians Primarily Concerned With Rising Prices – Poll
(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – April 24, 2018)
Rising prices remain the primary concern among Russians polled by the independent Levada Center, followed by poverty and unemployment.
While Russia’s economy grew 1.5 percent last year after two years of recession, it fell short of a government target of 2 percent. In March, one month before U.S. sanctions were imposed, real wages rose 6.5 percent year-on-year and real incomes rose 4.1 percent, compared with a 4.3 percent increase in the previous month.
Levada’s survey, published Tuesday, found that 63 percent of those polled named rising prices as the most pressing issue in their lives. Price growth has been named Russia’s top concern in the 14 years that Levada has included the question.
Poverty came in second at 47 percent, followed by growing unemployment at 40 percent and corruption at 38 percent.
The poll did not include questions covering anti-Russian sanctions, the falling ruble or the war in eastern Ukraine, Levada said. These issues polled at 8 percent, 12 percent and 19 percent the last time they were surveyed in 2017.
Only 5 percent of surveyed Russians said they are most concerned about restrictions on civil rights and pressure on independent media.
The survey was carried out between Jan. 19 and Jan. 23 this year among 1,600 people in 48 Russian regions.