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Wholesale and retail trade alongside with repairs of motor vehicles, motorcycles, household appliances, and personal demand items remained a dominating industry in 2005. The sphere of these types of activities accounted for 20.7 per cent of GDP, whereas there was observed a trend towards an acceleration of the rates of growth in the added value from 11.2 per cent registered in 2004 to 12.3 per cent observed in 2005. A characteristic feature of this type of economic activities was the dynamic structural shifts. The favorable changes in demand on the world markets had determined the outpacing rates of growth and increase in the specific weight of foreign trade in the structure of the trade turnover. The intensive growth of wholesale trade was supported by the expanding demand of the domestic market for material and technical resources. The fact that the amounts of wholesale trade almost two times exceed the turnover of the retail trade is a specific feature of the Russian economy.

In 2005, the increasing production in the construction sector continued to positively affect the dynamics of economic growth. By the end of 2005, the production of gross added value in the construction sector had increased by 9.7 per cent as compared with 10.1 per cent registered in 2004, whereas investment in fixed assets had respectively grown by 10.5 per cent as compared with 10.9 per cent observed in the preceding year.

The dynamics of real estate operations, renting, and provision of services was characterized by high rates of growth. The business activity in the sphere of real estate operations had been growing over the year and increased from 104.4 per cent observed in the 1st quarter to 109.4 per cent registered in the 4th quarter. By the end of 2005, the growth of the share of real estate operations in GDP made 9.6 per cent, what was by 6.5 p. p. above the level registered in 2004.

The amounts of output in industry were characterized by a gradual deceleration of the rates of growth and decline in their contribution in economic growth. In 2005, the index of industrial production made 104.0 per cent as compared with 108.3 per cent registered in 2004 and 108.9 per cent observed in 2003. The structural shifts in industry were determined by the outpacing development of manufacturing industries. The increase in the amounts of output of manufacturing industries made 5.per cent in 2005, whereas in the extracting industries this indicator was registered at 1.3 per cent as compared with 10.5 per cent and 6.8 per cent respectively registered in 2004.

In 2005, the dynamics demonstrated by the manufacturing industries were most significantly affected by the deceleration of the rates of growth in extraction of fuel and energy mineral resources. As concerns the extraction of fuel and energy mineral resources, the respective index of production decelerated to 100.8 per cent in comparison with 107.7 per cent registered in the preceding year, whereas in the extraction of metallic ores the deceleration of this indicator made from 108.5 per cent to 96.8 per cent. In the situation characterized by an increase in the tax burden on oil companies, there was observed a decline in motivation to increase the volumes of extraction and exports. Respectively, these developments resulted in a deceleration of the rates of extraction of oil to 102.2 per cent as compared with 108.6 per cent, whereas the exports declined by about 2.0 per cent in comparison with the figures observed in 2004.

Table Indices of industrial production as broken down by types of economic activities in through 2005, in per cent of the figures registered in the preceding year 2002 2003 2004 Industry total 103,1 108,9 108,3 104,Extraction of mineral resources 106,8 108,7 106,8 101,Extraction of fuel and energy mineral resources 108,9 111,2 107,7 101,Manufacturing industries 101,1 110,3 110,5 105,Production and distribution of electrical power, natural gas, and water 104,8 103,3 101,3 101,Source: Rosstat The dynamics demonstrated by manufacturing industries had rather significantly differed across the types of economic activities. At the average annual rates of growth in industry in 1999 through registered at the level of 107.3 per cent and the investment complex at the level of 106.2 per cent, in the raw materials sector this indicator made 105.9 per cent.

In 2005, in terms of growth in production the mechanical engineering could maintain its leading positions in industry; however, the output of products across selected industries demonstrated rather significant fluctuations. The increase in production of electrical, electronic and optical equipment made 20.7 per cent, whereas in the output of transport vehicles and equipment this indicator was registered at 6.0 per cent. At the same time, the production of machinery and equipment was stable. The dynamics of output of machinery and equipment was primarily supported by the expanding demand for products of lift and carry, railroad, energy, and agricultural mechanical engineering. Among the factors positively affecting the dynamics of production there may be noted the increase in the output of goods produced under licenses of foreign firms using imported completing parts.

Among the negative factors affecting the dynamics of mechanical engineering over the last years there may be named also the instability of demand of the fuel industry for domestic types of equipment at the backdrop of growing export earnings and increasing scale of export of machinery and equipment. In 2005, the growth in the imports of machinery and equipment made, by preliminary estimates, 38.5 per cent.

The state of investment mechanical engineering is a chief technological factor limiting the possibilities to resolve the reconstruction and modernization problems on a new technical basis. Although in the period from 1999 till 2005 the increase in investment in mechanical engineering made about 42.per cent in comparison with the level observed in 1998, it failed to have a significant impact on the technical and economic characteristics of the fixed assets of this branch and industry at large. In the situation, where the average renewal rate of fixed assets in the branch registered over the last three year made 0.9 per cent, whereas this indicator pertaining industry at large was observed at 1.8 per cent, in the structure of the stock of machinery and equipment there is registered a decline in the share of equipment aged below 10 years.

In 2005, the index of growth in the consumer sector made 4.3 per cent as compared with 2.9 per cent registered in 2004, when there was observed the minimal level of this indicator in the last seven years. The structure of production of consumer goods was most significantly affected by the trend towards the decline in textile and clothing production by about 3 per cent a year registered since 2002.

In 1999 through 2005, the dynamics of production of food products was characterized by gradually decelerating rates of growth. The increase in output of the food industry made 4.4 per cent in 2005 as compared with 5.1 per cent observed in 2003 and 6.5 per cent registered in 2003, whereas the specific weight of this branch in the structure of industry made 13.2 per cent as compared with 14.2 per cent observed in 2005. There was also observed a decline in the rates of development of food production in comparison with the dynamics demonstrated by the retail trade turnover.

The dynamics of types of production forming the market of intermediate demand had been in the band of positive values since 2002. The nature of functioning of the metallurgic, chemical, and woodworking industries had been determined by the levels of external and domestic demand. For instance, the acceleration of the rates of growth in production of coke and oil products in comparison with the figures registered in 2004 made 3.0 p. p., whereas this indicator in the metallurgy output was at 1.8 p.

p. At the same time, the rates of growth in woodworking and production of wooden articles decelerated by 4.3 p. p., while the respective indicators in the production of rubber articles and plastics, as well as in the chemical industry fell by 8.0 p. p. and 4 p. p. respectively.

The dynamics of development of metallurgy were significantly affected by the expanding domestic demand for metal products on the part of mechanical engineering and construction. A specific feature of development in 2005 was the outpacing rate of growth in output of metal articles (122.5 per cent) in comparison with metallurgical production (102.2 per cent).

2002 2003 2004 -Figure. Changes in the rates of production as broken down by the base types of economic activities of manufacturing industries in 2002 through 2005, in per cent of the figures registered in the preceding year.

In January of 2006, the impact of abnormally severe frost, which struck after the long New Year holidays, resulted in a significant deceleration of the rates of investment and construction activities, whereas rather high business activity persisted in industry and trade.

Table Dynamics of main economic indicators in January of 2004 through 2006, in per cent of the figures registered in the respective periods 2004 2005 Index of industrial production 102,1 101,6 104,Index of production of agricultural produce 99,5 99,8 101,Retail trade turnover 110,0 109,3 111,Investment in fixed assets 107,0 105,4 101,Real disposable cash incomes 90,4 89,7 108,Real wages and salaries 105,3 108,9 113,Source: Rosstat In January of 2006, the nature of dynamics as broken down by the types of activities was determined by main trends formed in 2005. The index of industrial production made 104.4 per cent as the output of manufacturing industries increased by 4.1 per cent and output of extracting industries grew by 0.9 per cent. The index of production pertaining to the extraction of fuel and energy mineral resources made 101.2 per cent in January of 2006, whereas this indicator pertaining to the extraction of mineral resources with the exception of fuel and energy resources made 97.3 per cent. In the same month, the extraction of oil, including gas condensate, made 39.9 million metric tons, or 101.9 per cent in comparison with the figures registered in January of 2005.

Textiles and clothing metallurgical mineral products Woodworking and wooden articles Production of rubber articles and plastics Products of nonMetallurgical products Production of leather, leather products, and footwear Chemical products Food products Production of electrical, electronic and optical equipment Production of machinery and equipment Production of transport vehicles and equipment Manufacturing production Pulp and paper production Production of oil products Extraction of natural gas increased by 3.7 per cent in comparison with the levels observed in the respective period of 2005. This development was facilitated the growth in the volumes of natural gas extraction on the part of enterprises belonging to the Gazprom OAO by 1.4 per cent. The Gazprom OAO had in full met its obligations to the consumers as set in the contracts for the supplies of natural gas. According to the data presented by the RF Ministry of Industry and Energy, in January of exports of natural gas made 20.5 billion cubic meters (104.1 per cent in comparison with the figures registered in 2005), including exports to the countries outside NIS amounting to 16 billion cubic meters (106 per cent), and to CIS member countries amounting to 4.5 billion cubic meters (97.8 per cent).

The growth in the exports was caused by the higher demand for natural gas in connection with the abnormally cold weather conditions. At the same time, due to the unauthorized natural gas withdrawal on the part of Ukraine, the volume of exports to this country was above the planned figures. In January of 2006, the specific weight of exports of natural gas in the total amount of natural gas extraction practically did not change in comparison with the figures observed in the respective period of the preceding year.

The volumes of supply of fuel and energy resources on the domestic market were significantly affected by the increased demand for this product on the part of electrical power engineering. The index of production pertaining to such type of activity as Production and distribution of electrical power, natural gas, and water made 111.8 per cent as compared with the figures registered in January and 107.1 in December of 2005. In January of 2006, the generation of electrical power increased by 2.per cent and 7.9 per cent respectively, whereas the generation of heat energy grew by 13.8 per cent and 13.7 per cent. The share of electrical power generated by thermal power plants in January of in comparison with the figures observed in January of 2005 in the total amount of generated electrical power increased from 68.8 per cent to 72.1 per cent, whereas the respective indicator pertaining to hydroelectric power plants and nuclear power plants declined from 16.1 per cent to 13.2 per cent and from 15.0 per cent to 14.6 per cent respectively.

As concerns manufacturing industries, special attention should be paid to the decline in the volumes of output of food products by 4.4 per cent in comparison with the figures registered in the respective period of 2005 and the decrease in the volumes of output of machinery and equipment by 0.9 per cent.

In January of 2006, the index of production of transport vehicles and equipment made 110.2 per cent in comparison with the figures observed in January of 2005, whereas the respective indicator pertaining to production of electrical, electronic, and optical equipment was at 113.3 per cent.

O. I. Izryadnova The State of Affairs in Industry in February February demonstrated positive dynamics of most of market indicators of the Russian industry. The growth of demand and output continued, the stock of finished products remain at a low level, the production plans of enterprises became more optimistic, the level of excessive capacities in industry lowered to historical minimum.

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