How to save and increase: improving financial literacy of the population was discussed at the Gaidar Forum

In his Message to the Federal Assembly, Russian President Vladimir Putin noted that conditions should be created to substantially increase income of the population. Financial literacy is one of key preconditions of the well-being. At the 11th Gaidar Forum at the Presidential Academy, participants of the session "Financial literacy as a tool to reduce poverty of the most disadvantaged groups of society" discussed how to increase its level and help those in the risk area.

Specifics of financial behavior of disadvantaged groups were at the focus of discussion. According to various surveys, experts included pensioners, young people below the age of 30, single parents, countrymen, multi-child families and families with disabled children in this category.

Guzeliya Imaeva, Director, National Financial Research Agency, drew attention to wide-spread unreasonable loan behavior among people with low income: "Surveys show that almost everyone is buying on credit nowadays. But we see that more well-off people choose for themselves such payment load level, so that it does not exceed 10% of their income. In the meantime, those with low finance level often assume the burden of 30%.”

To help people avoid errors in planning personal finance is the objective of the state as well, Nikolay Berzon, the Head of the Federal Methodological Center for Financial Literacy for Schools, noted, having pointed out the need for implementation of financial preventive measures and financial rehabilitation programs. “The first program shall enable Russians to deal with issues of relationship between man and banks, the issue of loans and load. The second program shall help restructure the debt, optimize the family budget and puzzle out what to do in bankruptcy,” the expert noted.

Speakers were equally of the opinion that, in order to improve the level of financial literacy of the population, the emphasis shall be put on working with schoolchildren. Early studies of financial planning principles will make it possible to get through possible difficulties in adult life.

“Unsustainable financial load may arise for reasons beyond man’s control. In such situation, it is important to understand, where to find money and other resources through a legal pathway, how to interact with financial institutions in a right way, and also weigh all the pros and cons of bankruptcy,” Anton Tabakh, Research Manager of Zhilfin and Finshok subprojects, Chief Economist, Expert RA, emphasized.

Moderator of the discussion was Anna Zelentsova, strategic coordinator of the project of the Ministry of Finance of the Russian Federation “Promoting the improvement of the level of financial literacy of the population and the development of financial education in the Russian Federation”. The session was also attended by Anna Chaplygina, Coordinator for Protection of Rights of Financial Services Consumers, the Ministry of Finance of the Russian Federation, and Aleksey Struchkov, First Deputy Prime Minister, the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia).

The Gaidar Forum is held at the Presidential Academy under the auspices of the Government of the Russian Federation and in 11 years it has become one of the most respected expert venues, which traditionally sets the vector for public and scientific discussion at the beginning of each year. The organizers of the 11th Gaidar Forum are the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, the Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy, and the Association of Innovative Regions of Russia.

The title partners of the Gaidar Forum are Gazprom PJSC and Gazprombank JSC. The strategic partners are Coca-Cola, Mastercard, Russian Railways, Pharmstandard group of companies, Johnson & Johnson, Sanofi, Novartis group of companies, MSD, AKIG group of companies, EF Education First. Partners are Prosveshchenie group of companies, EY, Huawei, RVC JSC, Russian Agricultural Bank JSC.

The title information partners of the Gaidar Forum are the Russia-24 TV channel, TASS, RBC, Business FM. The strategic information partners are Kommersant Publishing House, Interfax, Rossiyskaya Gazeta, Invest Foresight magazine, Federal Press Agency. The main information partners are, Gazeta.Ru, Lenta.Ru,, Profile. International partners are RT, ThomsonReuters, Sputnik, EFE, Cision, Pan Pacific Agency. Information partners are Snob media project, AEI PRIME, RNS, Expert magazine, Parlamentskaya Gazeta,, Ekho Moskvy radio station, PRO Business TV channel, FINAM.RU information and analytical agency, Davydov.Index holding, Strategiya magazine, Ekonomika i Zhizn newspaper, Econs portal, Gosudarstvennaya Sluzhba magazine, TV BRICS.