Brain Drain in Education and Health Care

7 mins

На русском языке: ​​В образовании и здравоохранении сильнейший отток кадров
На беларускай мове: У сферы адукацыі і аховы здароўя наймацнейшы адток кадраў

The state of the labor market has been deteriorating in Belarus for 2 years, the Telegram channel «Nashy Groshy» writes. Among the last 7 months, there was not a single company in which the number of hired specialists would exceed the number of dismissed. In a continuous format, such negative dynamics has been observed for the ninth month in a row (since November 2020). Last year, the situation also wasn’t optimistic. During the 7 months of 2020, only in February and July, the number of accepted exceeded the number of newly hired (by 948 people and 3,975 people, respectively).

The worst state is in Minsk, where for 7 months of 2021 15,745 more people were dismissed than were accepted (for January-July 2020 — by 12,026 people). No area has accepted more people than have been fired. In addition, in all areas, the negative trend has only worsened: the negative difference in January-June 2021 (cumulative total) has increased compared to the same period last year in all regions of the country.

And this is despite the fact that, unlike most countries, Belarus did not «close» the economy, did not introduce lockdowns, seeking to save jobs. Nevertheless, the unemployment rate (calculated according to the ILO methodology) in 2020 and in the first quarter of 2020 was higher than, for example, in the Czech Republic, Poland and Germany.

Brain Drain in Education and Health Care

What else we can see in fact: after the «positive» February 2020, March 2020 marked the beginning of further sharply negative dynamics in the labor market, laying a solid foundation for «negative labor selection» (excluding July, September and October 2020) for further periods up to the present. March, April and May 2020 turned out to be the worst months of last year, which is natural, since these were the periods when the active spread of COVID-19 began in Belarus.

For 7 months of this year in Belarus as a whole, the excess of the number of dismissed over the number of newly hired amounted to almost 50 thousand people, which is 29.8% more than the negative difference of the same period last year, when 38.4 thousand more were dismissed than accepted. Absolutely record for 2020-2021 was May of this year, when the number of dismissed employees was 17.1 thousand more than the number of employed.

In the context of economic activities, as the data shows, the most negative trend is observed in the following areas:

  • education: in January-July 2021, 12.7 thousand more people were dismissed than accepted; for 7 months of the last year – 18.3 thousand more.
  • health care and social services (6.6 thousand and 10.4 thousand more, respectively).

In addition, a negative trend in the labor market of the current year is the situation in construction (6.3 thousand more were dismissed than those accepted in January-June 2021 against the positive trend of the same period last year, when 1.2 thousand more employees were hired than dismissed).

Analysis of the dynamics of the labor market shows that the negative forecast trends in the state of the Belarusian economy (increased sanctions pressure, deterioration of the state with payments on external debt), coupled with the lack of an adequate reaction from the state to the labor market, can only aggravate social tensions. Instead of revising the size of unemployment benefits (which are obscenely low in Belarus) and retraining the released employees, the state continues the tactics of ephemeral «job preservation»: transferring some employees to 2/3 of the rate, or «pumping» inefficient enterprises with payments in the form of state support.

However, resources are needed in order to continue to artificially support these jobs, but the resources are are depleted and new loans are flowing in a smaller amount. In addition, sanctions can hit sectors where workers, in addition to generating revenues to the budget through the sale of products, also created demand within the country, supporting other sectors. Without effective support measures, the growth of social tension at enterprises can occur naturally.

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