Russian President Vladimir Putin had recently a series of meetings in Sochi with the heads of the Defense Ministry and other departments, as well as the leading enterprises of the defense industry complex. Together, they discussed ways to improve the combat capabilities of Russian troops in light of the US’s plans to withdraw from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty – a critical agreement which brought an end to the Cold War and stopped Washington from keeping nuclear missiles aimed at Russia in Europe. Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoygu spoke about this in a conference call on Tuesday, TASS reports.
The Russian army and state defense order program are working “under conditions of a growing arms race,” the minister said.
According to Shoygu, in the final meeting with the president, they discussed the need to “produce and accumulate missiles” and other munitions in the state material reserve system.
The new government arms program, which will cost the budget 22 trillion rubles ($329 billion) by 2027, will make it possible to maintain the necessary rate of rearming the army and the navy, Shoygu noted.
In addition, they discussed ways to establish the optimal reserves of logistical resources and to organize their safe storage and timely upgrading.
In the next three years, the expenditure on defense and security will grow by a record amount, announced Anatoly Popov, director of the budget policy department for the military and law enforcement organs, at the start of November. These functions will be allocated an additional 1.16 trillion rubles ($17.36 billion).
“This is an unprecedented decision, nothing similar has been decided before, or at least, for a long time,” Popov remarked.
The financing of the security forces will be upped incrementally each year. In the open part of the budget, it will account for 2.38 trillion rubles next year, 2.46 trillion in 2020 and 2.52 trillion ($37 billion) in 2021.
However, most of the expenses fall under the classified portion of the budget. “Together with the closed portion, the expenditure on law enforcement, defense and security will account for 30% of the state budget,” Popov explained. Based on the overall figures in the budget approved by the State Duma, this will equate to 5.4 trillion rubles next year, 5.7 trillion in 2020, and 6 trillion ($90 billion) in 2021.
Overall, the security forces will remain the federal treasury’s greatest expense: in 2019, 70% more will be spent on them than on supporting the Pension Fund (3.2 trillion rubles), and nearly seven times as much as will be spent on developing the education system (800 billion rubles).