SARATOV, April 5 (RIA Novosti)
The Russian government plans to allocate over 67 billion rubles ($2.3 billion) to museum activities over the next six years, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said on Thursday.
“Budget allocations for museum activity will grow fourfold to exceed 67 billion rubles in 2012-2018. The key sums will be spent on the construction and reconstruction of museums and their depositories,” President-elect Putin said on Thursday at a meeting with representatives of the museum community.
Putin, on a working trip to the Saratov Region on the Volga, recalled that some $509.1 million was spent on museum activity as part of the Russian Culture federal target program in 2006-2011, with the money used only for construction without museum maintenance.
He also instructed the Culture Ministry to work out a concept for museum branch development.
Putin said about 20 percent of nearly 9,000 buildings occupied by Russian museums met the the required conditions for storage of collections, while 40 percent need an overhaul.
“As for museum depositories, the country needs at least 500,000 square meters [5.4 million sq ft] of them,” he said.
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News that Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin would resign in order to run for the mayoral election in September came as quite a shock. Sobyanin’s political potential is fairly dubious, not to mention his approval ratings. He has not finished many of the projects he initiated and the electoral effect from these projects is expected to come a bit later than September 2013. Sobyanin’s opponents were not entirely unprepared for this blitzkrieg.