TRANSCRIPT: [Putin at] Meeting of the Commission for Monitoring Targeted Socioeconomic Development Indicators

Kremlin and River

(Kremlin.ru – May 16, 2016) The meeting discussed the state of progress in implementing the instructions set out in the presidential executive orders of May 2012. The agenda included, in particular, issues pertaining to staffing the healthcare system with qualified personnel, development of supplementary education for children, and raising the quality of public services, including in the housing and utilities […]

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Putin: We will break any blockade

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

(Interfax – May 11, 2016) Russian President Vladimir Putin said the power blockade of Crimea was broken within a short period of time and any other blockade against Russia will be broken in the same way. “The newest technologies were used here, the work, intensive work was done. As a result, the power blockade of Crimea was broken within a […]

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Will Crimea’s ‘energy bridge’ save it from dependency on Ukraine?

Russian Naval Vessel in Ukrainian Port

Electricity in Crimea has been partially restored: On Dec. 2 an underwater cable linked the peninsula’s electricity system with a Russian electrical grid. RBTH finds out why the Russian authorities were unprepared for the peninsula’s electricity being cut off by Ukrainian activists and asks whether the energy bridge will save Crimean residents from other infrastructure failures in the future. (Russia […]

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Power to the people; As Electric Yerevan showed, governments throughout Central and Eastern Europe and Eurasia will face the risk of social and political unrest when they move to compel their citizens to pay market rates for electricity.

Electrical Yard file photo

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – Ben Aris in Moscow and Nick Allen in Berlin – July 27, 2015) The Electric Yerevan protests in Armenia burned brightly before police finally quashed them in early July. But the issue of electricity tariffs that sparked the protests will not go away: nearly half the countries in Emerging Europe also face a similarly […]

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NEWSWATCH: Foul stench in rebel-held east Ukraine as war hits water treatment

Faucet and Water Drop

[“Foul stench in rebel-held east Ukraine as war hits water treatment” – Reuters – Gabriela Baczynska – Donetsk, Ukraine, March 18, 2015] Reuters reports on damage to water treatment infrastructure in war-torn Ukraine. Fighting in east Ukraine has interfered with water treatment, producing a foul stench from the taps that aid workers say could bring health risks. * * * The water supply system […]

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Putin and Medvedev Lament Rusty Tap Water in Their Houses

File Photo of Water Facet with Drop of Water Coming Out

(RIA Novosti/Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – December 6, 2013) Russia’s top brass are not immune from the same problems faced by ordinary Russians, it turns out, after the president and prime minister admitted to having rusty tap water from time to time. “Can you imagine: Even my tap water is sometimes rusty,” President Vladimir Putin said Thursday at a conference […]

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Navalny’s Bid to Reform Utilities Sector Headed for Rejection

Electrical Yard file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Oleg Sukhov – October 30, 2013) Two commissions of the Moscow City Duma on Tuesday recommended against registering opposition leader Alexei Navalny’s bid to submit a bill on utilities prices, which he has sought to make the first-ever grassroots initiative considered by legislative authorities in Russia. Navalny wrote on Twitter that the City Duma would […]

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Back to the 90s – Russia to freeze energy tariffs

File Photo of Blue Flame from Natural Gas

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – Ben Aris in Moscow – September 10, 2013) In the face of persistently high inflation and capital outflows, the Russian government has decided to freeze energy tariffs, which will give the economy a short-term boost, but will also stymie the long-term development of the economy. Times are tough in Russia after economic growth dropped […]

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Proposed Freeze on Utility Prices Seen as Politically Motivated

Electrical Yard file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Alexander Panin – September 9, 2013) On the eve of elections, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev gave the government three days to prepare a feasibility study on how a possible freeze on natural monopolies’ prices next year might affect economic growth and business in general. The Cabinet on Friday was ordered to evaluate by Monday the […]

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Inflation, corruption catching up with public utilities on Russian top problems’ list – poll

Electrical Yard file photo

(Interfax – MOSCOW, July 11, 2013) Housing and public utilities remain the biggest concern for Russians (55%) although the problem’s acuteness has been alleviated in recent months, the Russian Public Opinion Study Center (VTsIOM) said. The second biggest problem is inflation (47%) and low living standards rank third (46%). Corruption and bureaucracy (44%) and healthcare problems (43%) follow. The other […]

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CORRUPTION WATCH: Putin calls for public oversight of power sector

Cropped File Photo of Two Men in Business Suits Shaking Hands and Passing Cash

(Business New Europe – bne.com – February 5, 2013) After dubbing it the most corrupt sector in Russia, Russian President Vladimir Putin has moved again to crack down on graft in the utilities sector by calling for public oversight of the sector. Public councils are to be set up to oversee the sector and Putin said this will be done […]

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Bad Roads, Drinking, Utilities – Russians’ Chief Concerns

Moscow Traffic file photo

MOSCOW, January 30 (RIA Novosti) – Bad roads, the spread of alcoholism and the critical situation in the housing maintenance and utilities sector are Russia’s most pressing problems, followed by poor healthcare services and drug addiction, the Federal Statistics Service (FSS) said on Wednesday. Last September, the FSS conducted a survey covering 10,000 households in all parts of Russia and […]

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Winter in Russia: cold indoors as well as out

File Photo of Moscow In Snowy Winter Showing St. Basil's At Night in Snowfall, with People on the Ground in the Distance

(www.opendemocracy.net – Mikhail Loginov – January 16, 2013) Mikhail Loginov is a journalist and novelist based in St. Petersburg. He is the author of the recently published bestselling political thriller “Battle for Kremlin”. Most radiators in urban Russian homes are fed by hot water transported from heating plants miles away. Ageing pipes frequently burst, causing hardship and even fatalities. Could […]

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Electricity sector between a rock and a hard place: Year in Review

Electrical Yard file photo

MOSCOW. Jan 9 (Interfax) – Russia’s electricity sector in 2012 became a kind of blanket that was pulled in opposite directions by two opposing forces, which were personified by the government’s former and current tsars of the sector, Igor Sechin and Arkady Dvorkovich. They pulled on two, very large, corners – RusHydro and the combination of Federal Grid Company (FGC) […]

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Poor State of Housing Services Could Be Next Rallying Point

File Photo of Water Facet with Drop of Water Coming Out

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Alexander Bratersky – December 27, 2012) Calls for honest elections and President Vladimir Putin’s removal might attract the urban middle class to rallies, but it is rusty pipes and the poor state of the utilities sector that might persuade thousands of disgruntled citizens of all classes to march in the streets. The possibility that higher […]

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Russian opposition leader targets corruption, mismanagement in utilities

Alexei Navalny file photo

(Interfax – November 8, 2012) Moscow, 8 November: Opposition figure and blogger Aleksey Navalnyy has announced the launch of a new project, called RosZhKKh, for fighting corruption and shortcomings in the work of utilities and municipal services companies. “It is common knowledge that ZhKKh (Russian abbreviation for utilities and municipal services) in Russia is a black hole that sucks in […]

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Water Privatization in Russia: More Than a Drop in the Ocean

File Photo of Water Facet with Drop of Water Coming Out

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Luka Oreskovic – November 2, 2012) Without water, humans can only live for a few days. Yet only about 1 percent of the earth’s water is suitable for human consumption. Rising GDP brings increases in demand for food production, including meat, which demands the greatest amount of water. Treating water is therefore a key utility. […]

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Utilities Russia’s Worst Nightmare – Poll

File Photo of Electrical Yard with Fence and Warning Sign

MOSCOW, October 15 (RIA Novosti) – The critical situation in the housing and utilities sector is Russia’s most pressing problem with inflation only coming second, a pollster said on Monday. Over 55 percent of respondents in a survey conducted by the All-Russia Center for the Study of Public Opinion on Social and Economic Issues said housing and utilities tariffs were […]

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