Main Menu
Street Children
Human Trafficking


Poverty & Hunger

Russian Federation


In the early years of the 21st Century


Description: Description: Description: Description: Russia

CAUTION:  The following links and accompanying text have been culled from the web to illuminate the situation in Russia in the early years of the 21st Century.  Some of these links may lead to websites that present allegations that are unsubstantiated, misleading or even false.   No attempt has been made to validate their authenticity or to verify their content.



If you are looking for material to use in a term-paper, you are advised to scan the postings on this page and others to see which aspects of poverty are of particular interest to you.  You might be interested in exploring the relationship between distribution of labor and per-capita GDP, for example.  Perhaps your paper could focus on life expectancy or infant mortality.  Other factors of interest might be unemployment, literacy, access to basic services, etc.  On the other hand, you might choose to include some of the possible outgrowths of poverty such as Human Trafficking, Street Children, or even Prostitution.  There is a lot to the subject of Poverty.  Scan other countries as well as this one.  Draw comparisons between activity in adjacent countries and/or regions.  Meanwhile, check out some of the Term-Paper resources that are available on-line.


Check out some of the Resources for Teachers attached to this website.

*** Extreme Weather ***

Russia’s climate varies significantly across its vast expanse, from icy Arctic regions to temperate zones. In 2021, Russia faced extreme heat in the Volga River region and the Ural Mountains, with temperatures soaring up to 37°C (98.6°F) — 8-13°C higher than normal for that time of year. This heat posed health risks and increased the likelihood of forest fires. – adapted from Microsoft BING Copilot

*** ARCHIVES ***

The World Factbook - Russia

U.S. Central Intelligence Agency CIA

[accessed 17 November 2020]

World Factbook website has moved to --->

[accessed 8 January 2021]

A combination of falling oil prices, international sanctions, and structural limitations pushed Russia into a deep recession in 2015, with GDP falling by close to 2.8%. The downturn continued through 2016, with GDP contracting another 0.2%, but was reversed in 2017 as world demand picked up. Government support for import substitution has increased recently in an effort to diversify the economy away from extractive industries.

GDP - per capita (PPP): $27,900 (2017 est.)

Labor force - by occupation:

agriculture: 9.4%

industry: 27.6%

services: 63% (2016 est.)

Unemployment rate: 52% (2017 est.)

Population below poverty line: 13.3% (2015 est.)

Maternal mortality rate: 17 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)

Infant mortality rate: total: 6.5 deaths/1,000 live births

Life expectancy at birth: total population: 71.9 years

Drinking water source: improved: total: 97.1% of population

Physicians density: 4.01 physicians/1,000 population (2016)

Sanitation facility access: improved: total: 90.5% of population

Electricity access: electrification - total population: 100% (2016)

The Borgen Project - Russia

[accessed 2 March 2021]

The Borgen Project works with U.S. leaders to utilize the United States’ platform behind efforts toward improving living conditions for the world’s poor.  It is an innovative, national campaign that is working to make poverty a focus of U.S. foreign policy.  It believes that leaders of the most powerful nation on earth should be doing more to address global poverty. From ending segregation to providing women with the right to vote, nearly every wrong ever righted in history was achieved through advocacy. The Borgen Project addresses the big picture, operating at the political level advancing policies and programs that improve living conditions for those living on less than $1 per day.

~ Combating Elderly Poverty In Russia

~ How Russia Is Improving Public Health And Education

~ 5 Facts About Women’s Rights In Russia

~ The Process Of Reducing Poverty In Russia

~ Poverty In The Former Soviet Union Steadily Declines

~ 6 Facts About Hunger In The Russian Federation

~ 10 Facts About Sanitation In Russia

Russia to invest more than $200 billion in fighting poverty

Russia Today - RT News Network, 25 December 2020

[accessed 26 December 2020]

The Russian government is to spend a total of 15.3 trillion rubles (nearly $207 billion) over five years to reduce poverty and boost citizens’ real incomes, the country’s Accounts Chamber has said in its latest report.

According to the analysts’ calculations, poverty levels could fall by 2.32 percentage points, while real disposable incomes would increase by 1.04 percent from poverty levels. Additional help to poor families could further alleviate the situation, leading to a reduction of poverty by 1.99 percent and growth of real disposable incomes by 0.82 percent, the document envisages.

As many as 20 million Russians are living in poverty, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin pointed out during his marathon news conference earlier this month. He said that the country must cut these levels by half by the end of the next decade, from 13.5 percent to 6.5 percent of the population. Putin initially wanted to reach the ambitious goal by 2024, but some politicians later asserted that this could be too hard.

How SOS Children’s Villages Helps Address Poverty in Russia

Borgen Magazine, Moscow, 21 December 2020

[accessed 22 December 2020]

About 19.9 million Russians are still living below the poverty line in 2020 with a monthly income of 10,890 rubles, or $154 dollars. Several reasons account for this high poverty rate. First, the unequal distribution of wealth has affected Russian society for decades. Rural regions are often the poorest while urban regions are the richest. The fact that not all districts in rural areas of Russia have access to improved drinking water and sanitation facilities has contributed to this division. Additionally, government officials also primarily implement modernization efforts in urban areas.

The second factor that accounts for the high poverty rate in Russia is increasing food prices. Significant Russian staples, such as sugar, buckwheat, tomatoes and garlic, have risen in price by a third. One reason behind this development is because the rise in oil prices in Russia’s stock market depreciated the ruble. Plus, the ruble has fallen in value further due to the coronavirus pandemic. In addition, the Western embargo placed by Russians in 2014 is causing a rise in food prices. The embargo was a response to sanctions by Western countries. However, this embargo has made it hard for Russians to obtain certain staple needs, which has caused a rise in prices.

A third factor that accounts for the high poverty rate is the increasing number of Russian orphanages. More than 600,000 children in Russia do not have parental care. Since parents in Russia have fewer job opportunities, those who are unable to provide for their children abandon them. This perpetuates the cycle of poverty as the orphanages are typically overcrowded and lack access to basic sanitation facilities.

The World Bank in Russia

[accessed 21 April 2021]

After a prolonged recession, Russia’s economy has continued to grow since 2017, supported by stronger global growth, higher oil prices, and solid macro fundamentals. However, economic growth is projected to slowdown in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic and falling oil prices.

Looking back a few years …

Advameg, Inc., Encyclopedia of the Nations

[accessed 8 December 2020]

Russia's economic situation deteriorated rapidly after the breakup of the Soviet Union, which destroyed major economic links. President Yeltsin's 1992 economic reform program slashed defense spending, eliminated the old centralized distribution system, established private financial institutions, decentralized foreign trade, and began a program of privatizing state owned enterprises. Success was not immediate, however, as the GDP declined by over 12% in 1994 and 4% in 1995. By then, 25% of the population was living in poverty, corruption was rampart, and segments of the economy had gone "underground" to escape backbreaking taxes and bureaucratic regulation.

All material used herein reproduced under the fair use exception of 17 USC § 107 for noncommercial, nonprofit, and educational use.  PLEASE RESPECT COPYRIGHTS OF COMPONENT ARTICLES.  Cite this webpage as: Prof. Martin Patt, "Poverty - Russia",, [accessed <date>]