Russia heading for 2021 budget surplus, even with Putin spending goal -analysts

Last month, Putin promised to spend on infrastructure, education and health, seeking to give the ruling United Russia party a boost. The pledges added to social support measures announced in April that will cost the budget around 400 billion roubles ($5.40 billion) over two years.

Russia had a budget surplus of 626 billion roubles from January to June, the finance ministry said on Monday, with tax increases, the economic recovery and high prices for oil, Russia’s major export, all behind the boost in revenues.

“Such positive data is largely due to the Russian economy’s earlier than expected recovery and also high prices for oil,” said Bank St Petersburg analysts.

Unless significant anti-COVID-19 curbs are implemented, something Putin and other senior officials have repeatedly said they want to avoid, the budget will end the year in surplus, they added.

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