15 February 2012, Wednesday, 13:11
author: Lubov Kolokolova, Alik Shakirov
Field gathering of the Bashkir Government’s Presidium re problems in development of small towns and perfection of inter-budget relations is held in the town of Yanaul today.
Small towns are considered the keepers of cultural heritage and national originality in the whole world. Small towns in Russia with population less than 50 thousand people make up 2/3 of all cities of the country and about 40% of Russian population lives in such towns and at the same time small towns suffer the problems, common for the whole country, most of all – absence of normal roads, bad situation with education and health systems, shortage of workplaces and housing.
From one side small towns represent the most numerous group of urban settlements in the country and economic development of Russia is impossible without their participation and from another side small towns don’t have enough resources to solve the problems they face, i.e. without federal backing.
There are nine small towns in Bashkortostan: Agidel(16,3 thousand people), Baimak (17,6 thousand), Birsk (43,8), Blagoveshensk (34,3), Davlekanovo (24 thousand), Durtuli (31,6), Yanaul (26,9) and Mejgorie (17,3).
These towns can be combined into the following groups. First, small towns from the point of view of geography are mainly concentrated in the northwest of Bashkiria. Second, historically small towns of Bashkiria are rather young, for example, the youngest small town – Yanaul – is just 20 years old, and third, these towns are united by the administrative-territorial system, i.e. the majority of these towns are administrative centers of the corresponding municipalities.
Specialists say that social-economic situation in Bashkir small towns can be characterized as stable. Total population of small towns in the Republic makes up 250 thousand people or 6,2% of the all-Republican population.
Life in small towns is unfortunately formed by several economic factors and the main factor is unemployment and all other problems come from this one — low salaries, absence of means, alcoholism, poorly developed infrastructure etc. Besides, many small towns turned out to be adjuncts to the big industrial enterprises. There are the towns, which citizens are completely dependent upon successful or unsuccessful activity of just one enterprise.
Participants of today’s field gathering of the Government’s Presidium intend to consider the ways in development of small towns, taking their specifics and profiles into account. The long-term goal-oriented program “Development of small towns RB”, formation of investment registers and investment sites for these towns will become the next step.