OREANDA-NEWS. More than one million Russians have registered as unemployed since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, Labor Minister Anton Kotyakov said on June 15.

Some 2.4 million are now officially registered as jobless, Kotyakov said in a video conference with President Vladimir Putin — an increase of more than 85% since March.

Up to 220 000 were registering as unemployed every week during the beginning of May, when Russia was still in its non-working period, Kotyakov said. The weekly increase was running at about 155 000 during the first two weeks of June, despite the lifting of many quarantine measures across the country.

Before the crisis, official unemployment was around 1.3 million. That number is the narrowest interpretation of unemployment, based only on those who have officially registered with Russian authorities. Data from Russia's federal statistics agency Rosstat showed 4.5 million out of work at the end of May — a calculation that includes those who have not been able to officially register but are still actively seeking work. That was up from 3.4 million before the crisis.

Russian president Vladimir Putin has stated that authorities need to pay attention to the growth of unemployment in the country, although it is not as significant as in other countries.