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Moscow to Slash Funding for Occupied Ukrainian Territories – Forbes

A woman seem walking in Russian-occupied Donetsk. Dmitry Yagodkin / TASS

Moscow plans this year to cut financing for the four Ukrainian regions it partially occupies, the Russian edition of Forbes reported Tuesday, citing budget figures.

The Kremlin claims to have annexed parts of Ukraine’s Donetsk, Luhansk, Zaporizhzhia and Kherson regions, a move widely condemned by the international community.

Last year, the four regions received some 513 billion rubles ($5.8 billion) in subsidies from the Russian state budget, according to Forbes.

In 2024, those subsidies will reportedly drop to 303 billion rubles ($3.4 billion) as the Kremlin continues to solidify control over the occupied territories. 

“The new regions… are expected to be more financially independent,” Forbes writes.

Between 80% and 90% of the regional budgets in occupied Donetsk, Luhansk, Zaporizhzhia and Kherson were subsidized by Moscow in 2023.

This year, Forbes reports that their dependence on the Kremlin’s coffers will fall to between 60% and 75%.

But those projections are subject to change depending on the military situation.

As Forbes writes, in 2023 the Donetsk region received 37% more in subsidies than planned while also doubling its own revenues from 25 billion rubles to 51 billion rubles.

Subsidies are not the only source of income for the four Russian-occupied territories in southern and eastern Ukraine. 

Russia has a 2024-26 state recovery and development program valued at 900 billion rubles ($10.2 billion) and is partly financed by 26 Russian regions including Moscow.

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