Old Saint Basil's Cathedral in MoscowJohnson's Russia List title and scenes of Saint Petersburg
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#13 - JRL 2009-52 - JRL Home
Russian regions slashing expenditure

MOSCOW. March 16 (Interfax) - Russia's regional governments have updated the Finance Ministry on measures they have taken to cut budget spending.

The Finance Ministry said on its website that the regions or constituent members of the Russian Federation had reported they were slashing public sector wage increases from 30% to 10% and were reducing existing public sector wages 10%-15% by laying off employees.

This was reported by the Moscow, Yaroslavl, Belgorod, Bryansk, Kaliningrad, Kemerovo and Chelyabinsk regions and the Republic of Tatarstan.

These regions as well as the Saratov and Tyumen regions are cutting spending on their administrations by reducing the number of local civil servants 10% on average and reducing pay increases for officials by an unspecified amount. They are trimming their fleets of automobiles and the cost of maintaining these by 25%, communications expenses by 20%-30% and new equipment purchases by 10%.

Spending on local utility services is going down 10%-15% and spending on catering, medicines and transport is being cut by up to 30%.

The Moscow, Bryansk, Kaliningrad and Chelyabinsk regions are reducing social welfare costs by verifying how many people are entitled to it.

The Moscow, Belgorod, Yaroslavl, Vologda, Saratov, Orenburg, Kemerovo and Chelyabinsk regions and Tatarstan have cut subsidies to municipalities by 30% on average and have discontinued some subsidies, while at the same time provisioning funds to balance local budgets.

Eight regions said they had decided totally against capital repairs for property in their jurisdiction and had reduced spending on the maintenance of roads in populated areas.

The Bryansk, Moscow, Yaroslavl, Vologda, Kaliningrad, Orenburg, Saratov, Kemerovo, Chelyabinsk and Tyumen regions and the republics of Komi and Tatarstan have reduced capital expenditure by 50%-90% and will only fund construction projects which are in an advanced phase.

Regional authorities are also banning new construction projects and the procurement of new equipment, including automobiles.