Real incomes for Russians increased by 40% in the last four years. Moreover, they are expected to increase another 8% in 2004, said Russian Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin while speaking at a session of the State Duma today. He said that the number of Russians living on the brink of poverty decreased from 27% to 20.5% in the period from 1999 to 2003.
Kudrin also said that after the expected 33% indexation beginning on October 1, 2003 wages and salaries of government employees next year will be on average about 65% of the average wage in industry. That percentage did not exceed 50% in 2000, said Kudrin.