Arkady Rotenberg plunges headlong into the theater

According to the plan of Vladimir Putin, in three cities of Russia and the Crimea in the next four years they will build large cultural centers with a total cost of at least 120 billion rubles. Build them will be the company Stroygazmontazh.
Origin source
The project will be financed by Rosneftegaz, the most closed state company, and Stroygazmontazh, a businessman and friend of Putin, Arkady Rotenberg, will build the facilities. Stroygazmontazh was the general contractor for the construction of the Crimean Bridge and Olympic facilities in Sochi.

In detail. The project includes the construction of regional branches of the Bolshoi Theater, the Tretyakov Gallery, the Hermitage and the Mariinsky Theater in Vladivostok, Kaliningrad, Kemerovo and Sevastopol, she recognized the Bi-bi-si. Their opening should take place no later than 2023, Putin said in a message to the Federal Assembly on February 20. For the first time, Putin proposed to build such centers in the message of 2018.

Kaliningrad, Vladivostok and Sevastopol are selected from political considerations as frontier cities, a source close to the Kremlin, familiar with the preparation of the project, says. "It is perfectly clear that we need to somehow hold these three geopolitical territories," he said. Kemerovo was chosen as the last to make it “a model for the development of culture in industrial centers,” says another publication source.

The discussion of the project is held at the highest level - on January 8, Putin held a special meeting with the participation of Deputy Prime Minister Olga Golodets, presidential aide Andrei Belousov, governors of the mentioned regions, cultural adviser to the president Vladimir Tolstoy, director of the Mariinsky Theater Valery Gergiev, director of the Hermitage Mikhail Piotrovsky, director Of the Tretyakov Gallery Zelfira Tregulova and CEO of Stroygazmontazh Sergey Garayev.

Four centers will cost at least 120 billion rubles. Officials responsible for the project said that extrabudgetary funds would be spent on construction. But it turned out that it was not about private money - at the meeting, Putin said that the source would be Rosneftegaz.

Rosneftegaz is the most closed state company in the country, through which the state owns a stake in Rosneft, shares in Gazprom and Inter RAO, and in which dividends on corporate shares accumulate. Only half of the funds are transferred to the Russian budget. “Rosneftegaz” is our oil and gas revenues, taken out in a separate jug, ”Putin described it. Due to the opacity of the company and the conditionally extrabudgetary nature of the funds, information about the financing of the project is “under the neck” and the officials do not focus attention on it. “Rosneftegaz” could choose not to spend money on the centers directly from the budget in the event of a crisis, a BBC source said.

Rosneftegaz will transfer money to the National Cultural Heritage Foundation, which was created in May last year, which is the customer of the project, two sources say. The foundation was established by the Bolshoi Theater, the Tretyakov Gallery, the Hermitage and the Mariinsky Theater, headed by the former Deputy Minister of Construction and Vice-President of the State Corporation Olympstroy, Hamit Mavliyarov.
Rosneft wanted to be engaged in the project, but in a row was given to Stroygazmontazh by Arkady Rotenberg, which displeased the management of the oil company, the source said. So far, the fund has concluded contracts for the construction of centers in Vladivostok, Kaliningrad and Sevastopol. This was confirmed by the representative of Stroygazmontazh. According to a BBC source, the center in Kemerovo will also be built by the Rotenberg structure.

Putin’s centers are in fact an informal part of the Kultura national project, for which 113 billion rubles have been allocated, the BBC writes. Putin, Golodets, and the Minister of Culture of Medina attributed the cultural complexes to the national project, but they do not appear in his passport.

Problems. Deputy Prime Minister Golodets "believes very much" in the idea. If she gets tired, everything will collapse, billions will be thrown away, says a BBC source close to the Kremlin.

The system of financing projects is not fully defined. The operation of the centers is estimated at 12–14 billion rubles a year, which already requires money from the federal and regional budgets. If the content and content of the centers are transferred to regional authorities, they will have to cut funding for local cultural institutions, says the BBC interviewer.

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The museum community has a negative attitude to the idea because of the non-transparent process of creating centers, State Duma deputy Alexander Sholokhov, a member of the committee on culture and president of the International Council of Museums in Russia, said. “Museum workers have concerns due to the fact that there is no understanding of what it will be. It is clear that it will be something big, but what? They conclude that local museums will lose attendance and profitability, ”he noted.