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Defense Ministry Saves $748M by Disposing Unused Property

Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu Igor Tabakov

The Defense Ministry has saved more than 25 billion rubles ($748 million) by transferring unused property to regional and municipal authorities, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said Tuesday.

Speaking at the ministry's situation center, Shoigu said the armed forces held a lot of surplus property that could be either turned into municipal property or sold.

He also said the ministry had been sustaining "colossal losses" from maintaining and guarding the disused facilities, Interfax reported.

In June, the government supported a ministry initiative to invite outside organizations to assist in the sale of its property as part of a ministry decentralization policy.

Those organizations will be responsible for the preparing the ministry's property for sale and then selling it, Shoigu said Tuesday.

The minister said he was satisfied with the process of transferring military facilities to other owners. In the past nine to 10 months, the ministry has transferred 720 facilities to new owners, freeing up more than 5,000 personnel who guarded and maintained those facilities, leading to significant financial savings, he said.

"Total savings amounted to more than 25 billion rubles," Shoigu said.

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