#5 - JRL 7006
December 26, 2002
POOR AND RICH RUSSIANS ON THE THRESHOLD OF 2003
[from WPS Monitoring Agency, www.wps.ru/e_index.html]
According to the All-Russia Center for Public Opinion Research (VTsIOM), both entirely destitute and relatively rich Russians agree that currently the difference between the incomes of poor and rich Russians is extremely great. Nonetheless, according to recent polls, at present approximately 11% of entirely destitute Russians have an opportunity to increase their income - against 72% of rich people. Obviously, in the near future, the difference in incomes of poor and rich Russians will grow rather than decrease. According to a February poll, the same 11% of entirely destitute Russians had an opportunity to change their financial position, while the number of wealthy Russians who had such an opportunity was higher, 84%. Hence, the opportunities of poor and wealthy Russians will become equal in about ten years.
About 68% of wealthy Russians and only 33% of poor Russians think that the prosperity of a person mostly depends on him/herself rather than on the society. In February 2002, 69% of wealthy people and only 21% of poor people thought so.
The difference between the incomes of the poor and the rich keep growing; however, the viewpoints of poor and wealthy Russians are growing closer.