Russian President Vladimir Putin’s friends are benefiting anew by bagging lucrative contracts even as the economy teeters on the brink amid Western sanctions and a collapse in oil prices, Bloomberg News reported.
Arkady Rotenberg and Gennady Timchenko are among the Putin confidants that are securing a growing amount of state contracts, the report said.
Companies linked to Rotenberg and Timchenko — both of whom have been targeted by American sanctions for their ties to Putin, have together won at least 309 billion rubles of work since US sanctions were imposed in March, according to the report.
That figure, which works out to about US$8.1 billion at the average exchange rate over the period, is 12 percent more than they received in all of 2013, it noted.
A Rotenberg-affiliated company is now about to secure a 228 billion ruble order to build a bridge to Crimea, which Russia annexed in March, a source was quoted as saying.
In all, firms linked to Rotenberg and Timchenko have received since March orders that are equivalent to more than a fifth of what the government spent on contracts in the first nine months of the year, the report said.
– Contact us at [email protected]