Stability in the northern expanses.

Yamalo-Nenetsky Autonomous District is an example of the region's stable development in the Far North of Russia. By the end of 1996 the average wages in YaNAD were among the largest in Russia. This Autonomous District may be compared favourably with other Russian regions in some more aspects: the pensions and allowances in YaNAD are paid without delay, the average monthly wage is gradually increasing (1.8 times a year) and the improvement of infrastructure is going on.

The number of registered unemployed in December 1996 was 10 200. Out of this number 8300 received unemployment benefit. At the same time the officially declared need of workmen in the industrial enterprises of Autonomous District was 1340 people.

As far as the amenities provision is concerned, YaNAD in some aspect lags behind and in some - overtakes the average Russian indexes. The provision with telephones for the townsmen is 35 per 100 families (average for Russia - 46), for villagers - 15 (average for Russia - 19). The houses in towns and villages respectively were provided with:

The share of state enterprises in the trading sphere of Autonomous District is 20.6% and that of private enterprises -72%. The sphere of consumer services and entertainment is steadily developing. In the four towns (Novy Urengoi, Noyabrsk, Muravlenko and Nadym), containing 62% of Autonomous District's population, 65% of the total amount of services is rendered.

As for the paid services in cultural facilities, 73.5% of their amount is rendered to the inhabitants of the largest towns of YaNAD - Salekhard, Labytnangi, Nadym, Novy Urengoi and Noyabrsk, where 75% of Autonomous District population is concentrated. In 1996 the capital investments in house building took 51% of the non-production sphere, while the municipal construction - 22.4%, health protection and social security - 8.4%, educational establishments - 7.2%.

The most important educational establishments of Autonomous District are Salekhard Teachers' Training College named after A. Zverev, Salekhard School of Culture and Arts named after L. Laptzui. Their graduates are working in all regions of the Russian North. The branches of Moscow Architectural Academy, Moscow Pedagogical Academy, Tiumen State University, Tiumen State Oil and Gas Industry University, the Urals Legal Academy and Pedagogical University, Ural Business School, Tomsk Academy of control systems and radio electronics and the branches of some other educational institutions are functioning in YaNAD. Some new branches will be opened here in the near future. At present on the basis of Salekhard Teachers' Training College the mew institution of higher education - the Polar University - is being organized.

The territory of Autonomous District is the place of residence for the indigenous small peoples - Nenets, Khanty, Selkups. The legislation of Autonomous District gives additional rights and guarantees to the representatives of these peoples. It is important to note that the rein breeding for the indigenous people is not just a trade, but the mode of life, the basis of their existence. That is why the Regulations of YaNAD stipulate the creation of financial and material pre-requisites of the traditional trades' development.

Every month the social allowances are paid from the Autonomous District budget to the representatives of indigenous people. The Regulations stipulate that the natives should receive a certain part of the income, brought by the mineral resources exploitation on the territories of their permanent residence. The specific character of YaNAD national structure is reflected in the formation of local State Duma. When the elections are held, apart from ordinary single-mandated electoral districts the special three-mandated territory is formed, where only representatives of indigenous peoples may be elected.

In total over 122 000 people receive various social allowances in Autonomous District. The special attention is paid to the most vulnerable categories of population: young people, women and pensioners. The local budget finances the professional training of young people and summer holidays of children. The special measures for women employment are taken in Autonomous District. The pensioners in YaNAD receive not only pensions but also the social extra-payments.

Social stability and progress became the priorities of the social-economic policy of Autonomous District administration. Ten development programs on health protection and two programs on employment increase are carried out in YaNAD. The administration concluded general treaty with "Gasprom" company, according to which the company will finance the social programs of Autonomous District. Yamalo-Nenetsky Autonomous District holds the first place in Russia on the amount of payments, directed to the social protection of people.