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Russian arms makers switch to six-day working week

Shifts at defense enterprises may also be extended to 12 hours, a trade unions chief says

Arms manufacturers in Sverdlovsk Region in Russia’s Urals are working longer weeks due to the conflict in Ukraine, a trade unions chief has said.

Enterprises that are busy fulfilling government defense orders “are now working six days [a week] instead of five,” Andrey Vetluzhskykh, the head of the federation of local trade unions, said during a press conference in Ekaterinburg on Friday.

Standard working days could also be increased for the employees of such companies, Vetluzhskykh added, noting that the Russian law allows for the addition of four hours per shift in the event of “production necessity.” That means “working up to 12 hours daily,” he explained.


Businesses also have the option to recall workers who are on vacation, or deny scheduled paid leave, the unions chief said. However, this only applies to the defense industry and should in no way affect companies producing goods for civilian use, he added.

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Employees must be fairly compensated for the additional work, and unions are keeping an eye on employers to ensure that they fulfill their obligations, Vetluzhskykh pointed out.

The measures are being implemented because state defense orders have “significantly expanded” as the conflict in Ukraine continues, he said.


Sverdlovsk Region is a major Russian defense industry hub, hosting more than 100 defense firms. They include the likes of Uralvagonzavod and Uraltransmash, which manufacture armored vehicles and howitzers, respectively; NPO Avtomatiki, one of the country’s leading producers of control systems and electronic equipment for the space industry; Kalinin Machine-Building Plant, which supplies air defense systems to the Russian military; and many others.

December 16, 2022 at 09:35PM

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