The government thought about cutting expenditures on the Arctic by 17 times

The government can once again cut spending on the state program for the development of the Arctic.
Origin source
At the last meeting, under the leadership of Dmitry Medvedev, it was proposed to allocate only 12 billion rubles for these needs, 17 times less than the originally planned amount.

The strategic state program for the development of the Arctic, the creation of which is overseen by the Ministry of Economic Development, was conceived as a large-scale project for the development of the region. The department asked to allocate 209 billion rubles for its implementation until 2020, Deputy Minister of Economic Development Alexander Tsybulsky said at the end of January. But, as RBC wrote in May, following a series of meetings with Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin (in charge of the development of the Arctic), expenses were cut fourfold to 50.9 billion rubles.

However, as it became known to RBC, following the results of two more meetings - the visiting session of the state commission for the development of the Arctic in the port of Sabetta on Yamal on June 14 and the subsequent meeting under the leadership of Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev on June 16 - the amount of expenditures for the development of the Arctic decided to reduce even more, to 12 billion rubles. Two participants of both meetings told RBC about this. One of them explained that such a figure follows from the latest version of the program, sent out this week to the relevant departments for approval. Both interlocutors expect the government to approve the program until the end of the summer.

More than half of the curtailed program - 7 billion of 12 billion rubles. Will be spent on the design and construction of the ice-resistant drifting platform "North Pole" for Roshydromet, controlled by the Ministry of Natural Resources, said one of the interlocutors of RBC. This platform is intended for polar research, including in the field of meteorology and ice movement.

Until now, polar explorers have carried out similar studies drifting on the ice for several months, but because of global warming, it has become increasingly difficult to find durable ice floes on which it is safe to place people and expensive equipment, RBC told MNREP. With the advent of the new platform, suspended studies can be resumed in conditions that are safe for scientists and technicians, he added. The creation of an ice-resistant platform for scientific work in the Arctic will require at least 6 billion rubles., Said Minister of Natural Resources and Ecology Sergei Donskoi on May 18. According to him, the Ministry of Natural Resources is looking for a Russian company that will take up the project.

Another 25% of the program (3 billion rubles.) Was decided to be spent on the modernization of the Zhataisk Shipyard in Yakutia on the Lena River for the construction of new and repair of worn-out vessels of the river fleet. This fleet is also used to transport cargo within the framework of northern delivery, and the shipyard belongs to the Lena River Shipping Company. The total amount of the project is estimated at 5.5 billion rubles., Said on Wednesday, June 28, Deputy Prime Minister of the Government of Yakutia Alexei Struchkov. But he expects that from the federal budget will be allocated even a larger amount than provided for by the Arctic program - 4.1 billion rubles. (The remaining 1.4 billion rubles will be allocated from the regional budget and extrabudgetary funds). This year the project will be held by the Glavgosexpertiza and from 2018 Yakutia will start the implementation at its own expense, he added (quoted by TASS). The state financing of the modernization of this shipyard can be increased to 4.1 billion rubles if the regional authorities provide a justification and it will be arranged by the relevant federal agencies - the Ministry of Economic Development and the Ministry of Finance, said one of the interlocutors of RBC, close to the state commission for the Arctic.

Another 1 billion rubles. It is planned to provide Rosgvardia for activities to ensure anti-terrorist security in the Arctic, told RBC one of the members of the State Commission for the Arctic and confirmed another participant in the meeting.

The rest of the expenditure items of the curtailed program look much more modest. Kurchatov Institute plans to allocate 300 million rubles. On the rise from the bottom and the elimination of sunken radioactive waste in the Arctic, including the anchorage compartments of ships. Minstroy will receive 200 million rubles. On "research of permafrost soils under conditions of management". According to one of the interlocutors of RBC, these studies are necessary to understand how to build residential and industrial buildings in the Arctic on piles, how long the building will remain and what to do to repair it if the soils begin to be heated. The remaining funds will be distributed among different departments: for example, the Ministry of Economic Development will receive about 300 million rubles. To research and economic programs, according to RBC sources. The

The largest and most expensive projects are the nuclear icebreaker Lider, worth about 80 billion rubles. Or environmental and research vessels for the Arctic shelf, the construction of which was agreed upon in the previous version of the Arctic program, have not yet received budgetary funds and are not included in the current edition of the Arctic development program. "We do not lose hope to defend financing for the construction of these vessels and sent letters to the government and the Ministry of Economic Development with the appropriate justification. If the ships are returned to the program, its size can grow from the current 12 billion rubles. Another 3.1 billion rubles. The current vessels have already come to an old state and need to be replaced, "a source in the Ministry of Natural Resources told RBC.

At a press conference in Beijing in mid-May, President Vladimir Putin said, in response to RBC's question, that part of the projects in the Arctic have to be postponed due to a lack of budgetary financing. "Budget money is never enough for anything, but budget financing is not a panacea for all troubles, it is not the main tool for economic development," he said, adding that some projects in the Arctic can be "shifted slightly to the right."

But for military purposes in the Arctic for the Defense Ministry is planned to allocate 34 billion rubles., Told RBC one of the participants in the meeting on the Arctic. According to him, concrete projects can not be called because of the status of secrecy.

"Work on the budget is in full swing, so it's too early to comment on individual articles," said RBC's press secretary, Prime Minister Natalya Timakova. According to the representative of the Ministry of Economic Development Elena Lashkina, the government should take a decision on the draft state program for the development of the Arctic in the second half of 2017. "So far, there are no concrete solutions. The Ministry of Economic Development and Trade is working together with federal executive bodies to amend the state program, "she replied, refusing to comment on the details.

Representatives of the apparatus of Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin, as well as the Ministry of Energy and the Ministry of Natural Resources declined to comment. Representatives of the Ministry of Industry and Trade, Rosgvardia and the Ministry of Defense did not respond to RBC's requests. The representative of the Ministry of Finance promised to answer later.