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Russian Military Budget

Moscow, a major player in the global arms business, has worked to re-equip and modernize its armed forces in recent years as well as boost its international sales. But 2014 was a turning point, with the drop in world oil prices, Western sanctions and limited manufacturing capacity may force Russia to slow those ambitions.

In January 2008, with world oil prices surging, the Reserve Fund hit a peak of $142.6 billion. Today, with oil prices having crashed and Russia the target of Western economic sanctions due to its actions in Ukraine, the picture is starkly different. The country will run out of resources for replenishing the Reserve Fund next year, said Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov in October 2015. “We will deplete our reserves by about 2.6 trillion rubles ($40.85 billion),” more than half of the total, Russian media quoted Siluanov as saying. “This means 2016 will be the last year we will be able to spend our reserves this way. After that, we won’t have such resources.”

Russia’s financial ombudsman, Pavel Medvedev said in October 2015 "Today in Russia there is an enduring opinion that military spending is something of boon, a stimulus for the domestic economy,” he said. “Many academic papers claim that money thrown at the production of tanks and missiles indirectly encourages the development of the economy. But that is not true. When you go to the store, you don't say: ‘Cut me a slice of a barrel of the tank.’ Everyone wants butter, bread, sausages and so on.”

Russia planned to spend on its armed forces in 2016 more than 2.2 trillion rubles. This was stated in the conclusion of the Duma Defense Committee on the draft budget, published in the electronic database of the State Duma 30 October 2015. According to the document, in the Russian Armed Forces in 2016 it planned to spend 2.233 trillion rubles, or 176.674 million less than is spent in the current. In 2015, on the same item of expenditure was spent 2.410 trillion rubles.

It is also noted that the section on "National Defense" in 2016 planned to spend 3.145 trillion rubles. The military spending also includes spending on non-military training and mobilization, mobilization preparation of the economy, nuclear weapons complex, the implementation of international obligations in the sphere of military-technical cooperation, as well as applied research in the field of national defense. Federal spending under section "National defense" on the nuclear weapons complex in 2016 will increase by about 4 billion rubles.

Russian Defense Ministry will have more than half of its spending in 2015 to fund a state-financed armament program, Deputy Defense Minister Tatiana Shevtsova said at a lecture delivered for students of St. Petersburg State Economic University on 22 Janury 2015. “This year the Defense Ministry will channel more than half of all expenditures to fund the state armament program,” Shevtsova said. Expenses on the defense industry will not be cut regardless the current economic situation, deputy chairman of the Military Industrial Commission board Oleg Bochkarev said. The state defense order will grow by more than 20% year on year in 2015 and by more than 40% in 2017, he said.

The Russian Defense Ministry intended to downplay the risks associated with the price difference due to changes in exchange rate. This was stated in an interview published 30 December 2014 in the newspaper "Izvestia", the Deputy Minister of Defense of Russia Yuri Borisov.

"We are very concerned about the situation with the growth of the dollar. We had planned to price options on state defense orders for 2015, 2016, 2017 in a stable economic situation, laying the purchase of imported components on the course of this summer," - said the deputy minister. The situation has changed and, according to him, if the government will not make the payment exchange losses, Defense Ministry "will have to either reduce the number of pieces of weapons, or give up some [personnel] positions."

According to Borisov, one of the main challenges is the strategic planning activities with wrong prediction of price parameters on the ten-year period. "The real inflation in the defense industry is higher than expected, including due to the fact that the forecast is calculated in civil industries, excluding especially the defense industry," - said the deputy minister.

State expenditures for the defense sector will not change regardless of the economic conditions in Russia, the military industrial commission board’s deputy head Oleg Bochkarev told TASS 19 December 2014. The state defense order market becomes more and more popular. It is guaranteed and confirmed with funds. Besides, the president has made it clear that defense expenditures would not change regardless of economic conditions, he said.

The volume of state defense orders for 2017 will grow more than 40% as compared to 2014, and in 2015 it will be 20% more, Bochkarev said. It has been growing continuously. It was 30% more in 2014 as compared to the previous year, Deputy Defence Minister Yuri Borisov said.

In early December 2014, Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said that 25% more funds were provided from the budget in 2014 compared to last year for scientific research, tests, design work and purchases and repair of weapons and equipment. He also said that the number of weapons and equipment provided for troops grew 65%.

The cost of the State program of armament to the year 2025 would drop from 55 trillion to 30 trillion rubles through the development of strategic weapons and equipment types with similar characteristics, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said 19 December 2014 at the enlarged collegium session of the military. "The work has been completed on a type of perspective samples of weapons and equipment, have similar features and specifications. This will reduce the cost of State program of armament up to 2025, with 55 trillion to 30 trillion rubles, while maintaining the necessary amount of equipment," the report said. The cost of the State program of armament up to 2020 year is around 20 trillion rubles.

Russian Finance Minister said Anton Siluanov 07 October 2014 the country could no longer afford the multi-billion-dollar revamp of the armed forces previously approved by President Vladimir Putin. Siluanov said a new defense program should be drawn up to take into account the changed economic situation as the effects of the Ukraine crisis, including sanctions and capital flight, took effect. “A new defense program will be prepared now, and in its framework we want to reconsider the amount of resources that will be spent from the budget in order to make it more realistic,” said Siluanov, even though Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin, in charge of the sector, had ruled out any cuts in military spending.

Between 2004 and 2014, Russia doubled its military spending and according to the newly adopted budget, it will further increase it from 17.6 percent of all budget spending this year to 20.8 percent, or 3.36 trillion rubles ($84.19 billion), in 2017. Defense spending was foreseen at 23 trillion rubles ($576 billion) in the decade to 2020 under the original plan to upgrade 70 percent of military equipment by then.

Under President Putin, the Russian leadership increasingly acted as though an improving military supported its foreign policies and conveyed the image of an active global power capable of asserting it national interests. It also supported the leaders' domestic political position.

In 2002 Dmitry Rogozin, the chairman of the foreign affairs committee a member of a pro-Putin faction in the Duma, stated that Russia had only two reliable allies - the Russian army and the Russian navy. Many others in the Duma have called for renewed increases in Russian military spending as the only way to guarantee respect for Russia in international affairs.

Year Rubles Current $ ,000 Current $ConstantCurrent $
1987 3,9002,350.03,377.0948.2
1988 213,9002,510.03,487.0951.5
1989 77.33,7002,650.03,542.0932.8
1990 3,4002,660.03,432.0873.4
1991 3,0002,530.03,157.0???
1992 1,9008861,081.3310.2
1993 1,500833990209
1994 1,400743864.6278.3
1995 1,400725825157.3
1996 789,000.0191,300710793.1158.4
1997 67.31,300724796.4148.5
1998 .
1999 105.8620.
2000 110.91,195.
2000 .
2001 218.57.3.
2002 494.65.
2003 38010.5460.
2004 41114.
2005 53118.7 1,027 765.
2006 666 24.9 1,027733157.3
2007 775 31
2008 1,000 40
2009 1,280 50

All monetary values at official exchange rate (OER).

Purchasing power parity (PPP) exchange rates are the value of goods and services produced in the country valued at prices prevailing in the United States. This is the measure most economists prefer when looking at per-capita welfare and when comparing living conditions or use of resources across countries. The measure is difficult to compute, as a US dollar value has to be assigned to all goods and services in the country regardless of whether these goods and services have a direct equivalent in the United States (for example, the value of an ox-cart or non-US military equipment); as a result, PPP estimates for some countries are based on a small and sometimes different set of goods and services. In addition, many countries do not formally participate in the World Bank's PPP project that calculates these measures, so the resulting GDP estimates for these countries may lack precision. For many developing countries, PPP-based measures are multiples of the official exchange rate (OER) measure. The difference between the OER- and PPP-denominated values for most of the weathly industrialized countries are generally much smaller.

Federal budget expenditures by category for 2012-2015. billion rubles.
# PR Name 2012 2013 2014 2015 Changes to the previous year,%
2013 2014 2015
01Armed forces1,394.21,635.71,903.12,410.3117.3116.3126.6
02Mobilization and Training Corps7.36.796.886.8992.8101.3100.1
03Mobilization preparation of economy4.895.65.75.7115.7100.9100.9
04Preparation and participation in collective security and peacekeeping0.4
05The nuclear weapons complex27.429.2833.338.57106.6113.8115.7
06The implementation of international agreements in the field of Military-Technical Cooperation6.585.85.885.9988.1102.4101.8
07Applied research in the field of defense170.77198.3233.9228.5116.1117.997.7
08Other issues pertaining to national defense253.09259.59312.66381.9102.6120.4122.2

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