For a part of the population, the salary has long been intolerable, therefore, Belarusians go abroad, although there are 100,000 vacancies in the country, and this number will only grow.
"Try to do everything to make wages if not decent (we can't do it everywhere), but at least tolerable, so that people understand that today they have such wages, but tomorrow, under certain conditions, they could earn more. Be sure to maintain some growth; but not because we have upcoming elections. People take it very badly when we do it for some political reason," president Lukashenko said on July 29, while making another set of his typical cadre reshuffling.
"One can tolerate a toothache (at least for some time), but living just a tolerable life, when there is no war and no cataclysms in the country – this can't be treated as life at all," Gennady Fedynich, the leader of the REP Trade Union, has retorted.
"Politicians should talk to their folk in concrete figures and real actions. Today, the majority of the working-age population does not live – it just survives, not to mention pensioners. Look what they do: in 2015, Lukashenko promised the average salary of USD 500 in equivalent, and subsequently – up to USD 1000. Now, he has introduced a new concept – a 'tolerable salary'. He's been in power for 25 years – how long does he need to stay there in order to make a working man's salary decent? And who today defines what is decent and what is not – bureaucrats or people? During the 25 years in power, they failed to reach decent wages and salaries for their people, – these are not my words, president Lukashenko has stated this himself."
"If Lukashenko asks to make salaries tolerable, how can you characterize the current level of wages?"
"For an essential part of the population, salaries have long been intolerable. As a result, Belarusians are leaving abroad en masse; and there are 100,000 vacancies in the country, and the number will only grow (today, even the MTZ (Minsk Tractor Works), an industrial giant, has announced recruitment of workers – from turners to tractor drivers). In Belarus, you can easily find job, but you can't earn here. But you can work – for BYN 200-300 a month, or just for food. But life is granted to us, humans, not to endure and tolerate, but to live with dignity."
"State structures conduct a lot of social studies; perhaps not in details, but in general, these studies create a realistic picture region- and the country-wise as a whole. Will the gap between the authorities and the increase every year? This path leads to cataclysms and collapse, which should not be tolerated. If today 'people's servants' live much better than the 'host'-master nation, then, what have you built? Once it was said (not by me, but by Lukashenko): I won't lead my country after the civilized world. And he's led us along a different road."
"Is power alone to blame? No, the people are to blame too – we have to admit it. It's already a fact that we've left nothing good for our children. Therefore, let's think about what we'll leave at least to our grandchildren: the light in the tunnel's end, or another road to nowhere…"