According to European statistics agency (Eurostat), minimum wage in Russia is lower than even in the poorest countries of the European Union.
In most of the leading countries of the EU minimum wage exceeds €1,500 per month. Well, everything is clear here: it is impossible for Russia to keep up with the leaders in living standards and wages in the foreseeable future. But the worst thing is – even in poor countries like Bulgaria and Romania the monthly minimum wage is €235 and €275 respectively, while in Russia it is 7,500 rubles, or €120.
What is the minimum wage? According to paragraph 1 of Article 133 of the Labour Code, it is the lowest monthly salary. Employers can’t pay less by law. Since prices and utilities costs grow, all countries, including the poorest members of the EU, increase the minimum wage annually. By the pace of growth Bulgaria holds the first place: its minimum wage doubled since 2008.
In Russia the minimum wage also increases, but the growth is very slow, and the minimum wage is still lower than the minimal cost of living, which is currently around 10,000 rubles, or €160.
Meanwhile, the minimal cost of living only provides physiological survival, not a normal life. It only allows not to freeze and starve to death. The current minimum wage does not allow Russian citizens to make even this minimum living.
The fact that the minimum wage does not reach the minimal cost of living contradicts the Article 133 of the Labour Code. It turns out that the authorities violate the law and do not bear any responsibility for that. Earlier it was promised that the minimum wage will reach minimal living in 2017, but later Minister of Labor Maxim Topilin said that it will be done by 2020.