15 Oct 2009 14:56

Russian companies planning to lay off 450,000 - ministry

MOSCOW. Oct 15 (Interfax) - Russian enterprises have notified the authorities of their plans to lay off 450,000 people, but this process will be gradual and long-lasting, Deputy Health and Social Development Minister Maxim Topilin said.

"According to our forecasts, including monitoring that we are conducting, 450,000 people is the figure that the companies have announced, but this does not mean that this will happen tomorrow. This procedure is long," Topilin said at a press conference in Moscow on Thursday.

Some companies planning lay-offs then recall their notifications in certain cases, he said.

Asked to comment on the Independent Unions Federation's forecast that 300,000 people may be laid off by the end of 2009, Topilin replied, "This figure is basically in conformity with the ministry's evaluations."