Friday, August 29, 2014

Caucasus Report

Putin Tasks Trusted Lieutenant With Economic Development Of Crimea

Vladimir Putin (right) speaks with Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak during preparations for the 2014 Olympic Games in Sochi.  Vladimir Putin (right) speaks with Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak during preparations for the 2014 Olympic Games in Sochi.
Vladimir Putin (right) speaks with Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak during preparations for the 2014 Olympic Games in Sochi.
Vladimir Putin (right) speaks with Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak during preparations for the 2014 Olympic Games in Sochi.
Russian President Vladimir Putin named Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak, his long-time trusted lieutenant and trouble-shooter, on March 21 to oversee the economic development of the Republic of Crimea.

Crimea and the city of Sevastopol were formally incorporated into the Russian Federation as individual federation subjects on March 17. Putin then designated the two regions as a separate Crimean Federal District, and named Oleg Belaventsev, a graduate of the Sevastopol Higher Military-Naval Engineering College and long-time associate of Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoygu, to head it. 
A native of the Ukrainian SSR, Kozak worked closely with Putin during the mid-2000s as head of the volatile and economically moribund Southern Federal District. On succeeding Putin as president in 2008, Dmitry Medvedev appointed Kozak a deputy prime minister with the sole responsibility of overseeing and coordinating the construction of the infrastructure for the Sochi Winter Olympic Games.

Kozak is expected to unveil proposals for designating Crimea and Sevastopol a special economic zone at a government session on March 24. According to a study by Institute for National Strategy president Mikhail Remizov summarized by “Nezavisimaya gazeta” on March 21, before the decision to designate the two new federation subjects a separate federal district was made public, the Kremlin is seeking extra-budgetary funds to finance the development of Crimea, either by dipping into financial reserves or by persuading Russian investors to fund specific projects as they funded much of the Sochi infrastructure.
Remizov believes that approach may antagonize local businessmen. He also points out that the two regions are very different in terms of mentality, the structure of their administration, and the composition of their respective elites.
It is as yet unclear how Belaventsev will coordinate his duties with Kozak, who as a deputy prime minister is superior to him in rank.

Nor is it clear whether the designation of Crimea and Sevastopol as a separate federal district is a permanent measure, or whether the two regions may at some future date be subsumed into the North Caucasus Federal District. The future of that federal district is currently in doubt following a media campaign last month directed against Aleksandr Khloponin, who has been its head since it was first created four years ago.

Khloponin’s detractors make the point that he cannot claim the credit for the overall decline in recent years in the level of activity of the North Caucasus insurgency, and that he has failed dismally to improve socio-economic conditions.
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Comment Sorting
by: Konstantin from: Los Angeles
March 24, 2014 17:48
Cossacks Sams "quieted" Caucasus?
Cossacks Sams appointed to "quiet" Ukraine?
What next?
Will British Empire let Russia use A-bombs?
Russia versus Ukraine, Georgia might indeed pose challenge.
As Russian Varangas were idealizing Brtish Empire as mentor.
As British Normans were idealizing Russian Empire as
students, somewhat a bit wild -
As new World made Churchill and Stalin allies and Stalin
tried soften Churchill, showing him in vain his red-haired
daughter -
As I tried remind Brutish, since Russians burned history books,
that Saxons came from Ukraine, Ings from Ingushetia
(North border of Georgia), and Iberians from South Georgia –
would it be in vain also?
I hope not, unless, not withstanding the threat to Human
Civilization and Caucasian race at large, Britain is still owned
by Norman invaders that have illusion that their students,
Russian Viking-Varanga, will not do to them the same that
they did to a big Norman guy in a movie "The 13th Warrier"...
As Bechtel, with advise of Brits, in 1954, gave to ethnic Russia
technology to build arsenals of A-bombs, to bomb resisting
repopulation by Russia nations, like Georgia and Ukraine –
will British help us all to prohibit Russians use, or threaten
us with A-bombs, to expand their evil Empire?

by: jojnjo from: Dublin
March 25, 2014 02:34
So he's putting Kozak in charge of the stolen property & also now wants investors who funded Sochi Games to help him. Has Vlad never heard the saying "Once Bitten, Twice Shy" as much of the Sochi billions went astray into certain pockets. Nod,nod, wink, wink.

Let me tell him something in his ears, the Crimea will need billions to keep the people there blissful as to their expectations of being under the Russian umbrella, but in no time they'll feel the rain coming in as the winds of change won't be as Utopian as they expect. And of course theirs (Russia's) economy is going to be weighted down by this extra pull on it's back. & then there's the other regions in Russia which really need this money & he goes & ignores all of their pleadings.

PS. Mr President, taking Crimea was like a piece of cake to you; but you must know to cook same you need plenty of

by: Eugenio from: Vienna
March 25, 2014 18:35
There is no reason to worry abou the future economic prospects of the Crimean Republic: the Russian Military and tourism will make of it a prosperous place just a few years from now.
The economic future of the rump Ukraine, however, is something different: the current de facto govt in Kiew is currently negotiating a "help" package with the International Monetary Fund, and people here in Europe know how it ends. Just look at Greece: after 5 years of "help" from the IMF, the country's GDP has shrunk by 25 %, the unemployment level is about 27 % of the active population. So, Ukrainians, welcome to the "bright European dream" :-))!
In Response

by: jojnjo from: Dublin
March 26, 2014 00:30
Well...Russia may not have 1...2....3....4....5 years to play around with as their economy is already on the wrong side of prosperous, in fact, it's more close to the word "Broke", & even their gas & oil mountains won't count for much if they invite tougher sanctions by trespassing on any more of Ukraine or anywhere else. And they have no big conglomerate like Europe to go looking for a bailout to & as for the IMF... well Russia actually is in hock to them for Billions$ already... Russia's national debt as I write is, 7,328,602,346,099 руб...ouch.

PS. Russia's Finance Minister Anton Siluanov (today) suggested Ukraine ask the IMF for help, so you see, Russia on it's own can't finance Crimea never mind Ukraine.
In Response

by: Eugenio from: Vienna
March 26, 2014 15:05
Hello Jonjo from Dublin: if you really are from Ireland, you should probably not be looking for those who are really BROKE further any further than where you live :-)).
As far as Russia is concerned, to the best of my knowledge, it is currently among the 10 LEAST endebted countries globally, its sovereign debt representing some 10 % of its GDP (as compared to more than 100 % of their respective GDPs for such NATO member states as the US, Greece or Italy).
As far as Ukraine is concerned, no woder "Anton Siluanov (today) suggested Ukraine ask the IMF for help": the last thing Russia needs now is to pay for the "democratic experiments" of Victonia Nuland and her friends in Ukraine. They wanted to be "free" - so be it! Go to the IMF and the latter will organized you your "freedom" the way it has for Greece, Argentina and so many other countries in the past :-)).
In Response

by: peter from: ottawa
March 26, 2014 11:50

Evgeny aka Eugenio when the Ukrainian gvt cuts off all water and hydro supplies to Crimea , the rooskies can live in the dark, they can use worthless rubles for wall paper and heat , sit in their outhouses wishing of a life once had. There s a section of the Koran written especially for you Evgeny, its called the Hyprocates. Cheers .
In Response

by: Eugenio from: Vienna
March 26, 2014 15:07
Hi there, Peter from Ottawa, I am pleased to know that at least one section of Qoran was written personally for me :-)).

by: Alston from: NYC
March 25, 2014 20:51
Hey, mr. from Dublin-
Why do you guys hate Russia and Putin so much? Bc he is not gay and doesn't let gays and other wierdos control his agenda?

by: peter from: ottawa
March 26, 2014 21:52
Evgeny aka Eugenio at least you know what you are. Allah Akbar

by: Tash
March 27, 2014 06:08
Putin "put" the Crimea "in" the Russian Federation...

About This Blog

This blog presents analyst Liz Fuller's personal take on events in the region, following on from her work in the "RFE/RL Caucasus Report." It also aims, to borrow a metaphor from Tom de Waal, to act as a smoke detector, focusing attention on potential conflict situations and crises throughout the region. The views are the author's own and do not represent those of RFE/RL.