On small-scale businesses in Russia

By the main indices published by Rosstat and describing the development of small-sized businesses, the figures recorded in the first half-year 2009 are markedly lower than those for the same period of the year 2008.

However, a comparative analysis of the results of small businesses; operation in the first half-year 2009 has pointed to the fact that the decline in turnover volume and investments in fixed assets in Q II 2009 became somewhat slower by comparison with the preceding period – both when broken down by territory and by type of economic activity. This has provided some grounds for an optimistic estimation of the development prospects for small- and medium-sized businesses in the Forecast of the Socio-Economic Development of the Russian Federation for the year 2010 and the Planning Period of 2011 - 2012 presented by the RF Ministry for Economic Development.

The development of small- and medium-scale entrepreneurship has been included in the list of projects aimed at implementing the Main Directions for the Activity of the Government of the Russian Federation in the period until 2012. The main goals of the project are as follows: 1) an increased share of small- and medium-scale entrepreneurship in the economy; 2) the formation of an innovation-oriented production structure for small- and medium-scale entrepreneurship.

The project’s target indices for the period of 2009 – 2012 are as follows:
  •  doubling the share of employment by small- and medium-sized businesses as compared to the overall employment rate across the national economy (up to 28 %),
  •  increasing the share in GDP of output by small- and medium-sized businesses by 1.5 times (up to 1/3 of GDP),
  •  growth of the number of small- and medium-sized businesses per 1 thousand persons by 15 % (up to 11.4 companies),
  •  increasing the share of output by small- and medium-sized businesses operating outside of the sphere of commerce by 50 % of the total turnover of that sector of the national economy.

The growth in the number of subjects of small- and medium-sized entrepreneurship is closely associated with the adequacy of the explanation of the government policy aimed at promoting the development of entrepreneurship and with popularizing the idea of private entrepreneurship and encouraging the population’s interest in this activity. According to forecasts, by 2012 Russia may come very close to the global index of the share of persons desiring to start their own business (10 %), which will be 4 times higher than the currently existing level.

O. I. Izriadnova, Head of the Department of Economic Structural Issues