Staunton, April 1 – Denis Nazarov, head of the Moscow section of Business Russia says that the pandemic may lead to the loss of 500,000 to one million service industry jobs and is calling on the Russian government to offer interest-free loans to such enterprises so that they can remain in business and keep their workers employed.
His organization has appealed to the government and to the Kremlin to take such a step to prevent the collapse of the service sector with its direct cost of the loss of jobs for so many and the indirect cost of depriving other residents of the capital of services (finanz.ru/novosti/aktsii/okolo-1-mln-moskvichey-mogut-ostatsya-bez-raboty-1029053774).
The Russian capital is not limited to the government or big business, Nazarov points out. There are some 400,000 workers in communal services, 300,000 in cultural and creative ones, 200,000 in the fitness and sports industry, 160,000 in hotels, 30,000 in the exhibits sector, and 30,000 in healthcare.
“Now, all these workplaces are under threat,” he says. “In certain branches, if nothing is done, 50 percent of the companies will leave the marketplace and some will die completely. Our common task is to preserve to the maximum extent possible these workplaces” and the services and lives they make possible.
Moscow has been hit harder by the pandemic than any other city particularly with regard to the economy and largely because of the high concentration of service industries now at risk. The most important step the government can take is to offer interest-free loans to such firms who retain their workers.
Business Russia has also made 26 other proposals including a delay in tax deadlines to September 30 or in some cases to December 31.