Plan to revive Russian economy to cost $11.7 bln: Minister

Plan to revive Russian economy to cost $11.7 bln: Minister

MOSCOW - Reuters
Plan to revive Russian economy to cost $11.7 bln: Minister

Russian Economy Minister Alexei Ulyukayev speaks during United Russia party congress in Moscow, Russia, February 5, 2016. REUTERS Photo

A Russian government plan to shore up the recession-battered economy will cost around 880 billion rubles ($11.7 billion), Economy Minister Alexei Ulyukayev told a cabinet meeting on Feb. 18.

Some of these funds have already been factored into the 2016 federal budget, Ulyukayev said, but the government still needs to find additional money.

Some 185 billion rubles will be allocated from the budget’s anti-crisis fund and there is also some money left over from last year’s budget, but that would not suffice, he said.

With oil prices well below levels originally envisaged for this year, the government of Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev is trying to keep the economy from sinking too much into recession and at the same time maintain control over the budget deficit.

Medvedev reiterated on Feb. 18 that all social security obligations - pension, health insurance, disability and other such payments - must be met this year, but that there should be a greater control over public spending.

Ulyukayev said some additional funds could probably be found with amendments to the budget law. “Now, the main thing is to decide on priorities,” he said.