No problems with money
Russia’s 2016 draft budget envisages allocation of RUB 7,9billion (approximately $123 million) financial aid to Abkhazia. Under the documents, it is almost twice more than planned, but there is actually no increase in funding.
The thing is that in 2015, Abkhazia has received a miserly sum – just RUB179 million (approx. $2,5 million) out of the planned Russian tranche amounting to RUB 3,7 billion (approx. $58 million).
Behind-the-scenes sources, that are well familiar with details, say the reason is that Abkhaz authorities failed to properly substantiate funding and the Russian Finance Ministry was unable to transfer all planned funds.
Amra Kvarandzia, Abkhaz Finance Minister, disagrees with such interpretation of the events. She says, 2015 Annual Investment Program “spelled out in details, what each Ruble is spent for: be it a road, hospital or school.
Amra Kvarandzia, Abkhaz Finance Minister
Due to the lack of Moscow tranches, Abkhaz authorities had to seek funds for allowances, relying on their own resources. This year’s budget has been replenished by RUB 500 million due to more effective administration. This is exactly the sum that has made it possible to pay increased salaries to public officials in full.
Abkhaz officials have their own explanations, disclaiming guilt of themselves and of Moscow as well. Akhra Aristava, Deputy Economy Minister of Abkhazia, suggested that problems with providing funds to Abkhazia in 2015 might have appeared because of a complex economic situation in Russia. He noted that Abkhazia was “friendly and patiently looking forward to the “Russian people’s gift.
Akhra Aristava, Deputy Economy Minister of Abkhazia
Explaining the reasons for delayed funding, Abkhaz Parliament Speaker, Valery Bganba, referred to some “technical problems.
Meanwhile, the opposition links the absence of tranches to cool-down in Russian-Abkhaz relations. “The lack of financial aid, new projects and investors, are the result of Khajimba’s unsuccessful policy with regard to the Russian Federation. He seems to have failed to fulfill his pledges there. The President and the Premier are travelling across Russia’s regions to cover this failure, but in vain. There are no other explanations, Alkhas Kvitsinia, the oppositional “Amtsakhara party leader, stated at the party congress.
“Amtsakhara party gathering
Now the matter is that the funds, envisaged for 2015 and not transferred this year, should be allocated to Abkhazia in 2016. As a matter of fact, the total sum of the next year’s funding is not going to increase.
- Complex program for socio-economic assistance to Abkhazia has been in effect since 2010. Approximately RUB15 billion have been transferred to the republic from Russian treasury.