Less than 20% of Russians approve of government's performance

Only 18% of Russians approve of the government's performance, according to a poll carried out by the Public Opinion foundation. 41% of those polled gave a negative evaluation of the government's performance. Only 3% said that their opinion of the government had improved over the last few months, while 12% said that it had got worse. The majority of those questioned (72%) stated that their opinion of Mikhail Kasyanov's government remained unchanged.

Participants in the poll who claimed that the government was performing badly were asked to justify their opinion. The most frequent response was that 'almost all decisions remain on paper' (13%). Other complaints were 'the low standard of living in the country' (9%), unemployment (2%), price rises (2%), the fact that 'economic problems are not being resolved' (6%), 'the high level of corruption' (3%), and 'the lack of law and order' (2%). 4% of those polled were unhappy that the government 'is not concerned about the people'. Some respondents were critical of cabinet members, saying that they 'worry more about their own pockets than the people's pockets' (2%) and that they are 'not competent enough' (1%).

Those Russians who are satisfied with the government's performance most often describe the cabinet's successes as 'the positive changes that are taking place' (5%), the fact that people's lives are getting better (4%), 'raising pay and pensions' (3%), the fact that 'the population's income has risen on average since the Yeltsin era' (1%), and 'increases in state subsidies and improvements in the population's social status' (1%). Those polled also said that 'production is rising' and inflation has fallen (2%).

1,500 people took part in the nationwide poll.

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